Wilderness Survival: Hunt Like The World’s Greatest Tribes

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Mankind has hunted all through history, killing animals for food. The earliest people were hunter-gatherers, who combined their hunting with gathering edible plants, fruits, nuts and roots. Gradually, over time, these methods were replaced by agriculture, as growing plants and animals for food is much more efficient than harvesting them out of nature.

Not So United Nations

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The United Nations has been problematic for us here in the USA since its inception in 1945. While its original purpose was predominantly that of maintaining international peace, it has become largely focused on promoting social progress, one of its secondary purposes.

Is South African Violence A Sign Of What’s Coming To The United States?

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The ending of South African apartheid was a great victory for human rights, supposedly signaling an end to the racism that ruled that country. During apartheid, the white minority held complete control over the economy and the politics of the country.

Cape Town “Day Zero”: How To Survive When The City Turns Off The Taps

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Here in the United States, we rarely hear much about what’s going on in the rest of the world. Our news media is so focuses on the latest scandal, many of which are of their own creation, that they tend to ignore what’s going on in other countries.

Yet every day, people around the world face crisis and disaster that we don’t hear about.

Such is the situation in Cape Town, South Africa today. There’s a countdown to disaster going on there, as the 3.7 million residents in the area race towards what is being called “day zero.” This is the day when the city runs out of water and it’s currently projected to be May the 11th; just a few short months away.

On that day, the city water authorities will be shutting off water to all but critical installations. People will be forced to get their water from centralized locations, carting it home. A maximum of 25 liters of water (6.75 gallons) per person, per day will be authorized until the day zero crisis is over.

While some people are trying to stockpile bottled water now in preparation, not everyone can do that.

So, what has brought the city to this point? Many say that it has been poor management of the municipal water supply. Accusations of leaky pipes that have not been repaired, poor management of the infrastructure and lack of planning abound.

video first seen on Guardian

But regardless of whether these accusations are true or not, the reservoir that Cape Town depends on for water is down to 26.3% of capacity, after three years of drought.

Government officials are blaming the current water shortages on global warming, which makes a handy scapegoat. But droughts have existed throughout the history of the world, regardless of whether global warming exists or not.

Not developing the necessary infrastructure to survive those droughts is irresponsible on the part of any government, essentially ignoring their responsibility to protect the people they are sworn to serve.

Currently, a massive water conservation campaign is going on in the city, as the residents pull together to extend the date for day zero. So far, this has added four days to the calendar. While that may not seem like much, it is a major victory, one that can be expanded upon.

One news interview of a resident shows how hard people are working to make this campaign work. The man stated that their normal water use was 19,000 liters (5,135 gallons) per month, but that the last month his family only used 8,000 liters (2,162 gallons); a reduction of 58%.

But that probably isn’t going to be enough. Further cuts will have to be made, unless the drought breaks and the reservoir fills once again.

To put that in perspective, the average American uses 80-100 gallons of water per day. So, a family of four would use roughly 12,000 gallons of water per month, more than double what the middle-class South African family uses.

Of course, that interview was of a typical middle-class homeowner. The poor of South Africa, like the poor elsewhere in the world, get by with much less water than that.

Any time people don’t have running water available, and instead have to haul water from the local source, whether a natural source of a government installed community water pipe, they find ways of living on much less water.

I’ve spent time in the villages of Mexico, places where they didn’t have running water. Instead, each family had a water tank out front and the city water truck would come and fill it twice a week. That gave them 100 to 150 gallons of water to last three to four days; roughly 15 gallons per person, per day.

But that’s not the worst. If there is anywhere where people struggle with having enough water it is in sub-Sahara Africa. The norm there is for people to live on five gallons of water per person, per day. That takes care of drinking, cooking and cleaning, including bathing, washing clothes and washing dishes.

Can This Happen Here in the US?

The big question this brings to mind is whether this sort of thing could happen here in the United States. Let’s be honest with ourselves a moment; we’re spoiled. We expect to turn the faucet on and have a virtually unlimited supply of clean, purified water to use.

But that doesn’t mean that it will always be that way. In recent years, we have seen a number of droughts plague various parts of our country. It seems like hardly a year goes by, where there isn’t one part of the country or another which is in drought.

A few years ago, I was in the Colorado Rockies and saw first-hand how low the reservoirs were at that time. Several states depend on the water from those reservoirs, which are filled by the melting winter snow.

Southern California, where a large part of the country’s produce is grown, has seen severe droughts over the last few years, and it is unlikely to get better soon.

Since the area is normally arid, the state has spent billions of dollars over the last few decades, in creating the necessary infrastructure to collect and transport water from the wet northern part of the state for use in farming the southern part.

But politics got in the way of practical reality, and the water which was intended for those farmers was instead flushed down-river to protect the delta smelt, a feed fish.

It is easy to say that this was a situation caused by mismanagement of the available resources. Had the politicians stayed out of the way, the drought would have been manageable and the farmers would have had enough water. But by allowing shaky environmentalism to overcome practical necessity, California’s government has put many of the state’s farmers out of work.

Forgotten Recipes That We Lost To History

But that’s not the worst situation we face, as far as our water supply is concerned. The scariest piece of data to come forth is that the water level of several of our major aquifers is dropping. We are using the water from those aquifers at a faster rate than it can be replenished.

The aquifers most seriously affected by this are: the Canbrian-Ordavician Aquifer, the High Plains Aquifer and the two aquifers in Southern California.

These are the aquifer that provide water for a large part of the nation’s farming. So, water shortages in those areas means more than just a lack of water, it can lead to shortages in food as well. While water is a higher survival priority than food is, we need both of them to survive.

What Should We Do?

The reality is that you and I are subject to facing the consequences of those who control our water supply, as well as any natural disaster or drought. The economic, technological and military might of the United States can’t do a thing to stop drought. All we can do is prepare for it as best we can.

I don’t care where you live, unless maybe in the Pacific Northwest, rain is not consistent. There are wet spells and dry spells, and just about every resident who has lived anyplace can tell you when they usually are in that area. This is why our country has invested so much in building reservoirs, with over 84,000 dams in the United States.

The reservoirs allow us to have water during the dry spells; but even then, there is a limit to their capacity.

Of course, even if the reservoirs are filled to capacity, that water has to make it from the reservoir to our tap before we can use it. This makes the entire system dependent on electricity, the easiest part of our infrastructure to interrupt.

Blackouts which last more than 12 hours, can be accompanied by a lack of water pressure or even the water shutting off, just because there isn’t power to run the pumps.

The only solution for you and I is to have our own water stockpile. But more than that, we need a means of harvesting water from nature, so that we aren’t totally dependent on the system. That way, if something happens, at least we will have water, even if nobody else does.

This is really the only way we can protect ourselves from ending up standing in line, waiting our turn to get a few gallons of water, like the people of Cape Town. While we will probably still find ourselves having to ration water, at least we’ll have water to ration; and it will be our water, not water that the government can turn off or give away to some bait fish that we’ve never heard of.

There are actually three things we need to do here:

  • Stockpile water
  • Develop a means of harvesting water
  • Have a way of purifying water

I’m not going to get into a detailed discussion about these three areas here, as there are other articles here on Survivopedia which do. But there are a few key things that I want to mention.

Stockpiling Water

Water is difficult to stockpile, simply because of the vast amount of water we need. Since dehydrated water is only a joke, there is no real way of reducing the water’s volume, making it possible to store it in a smaller space. So the question then becomes, where can you find all that space?

I suppose if we all had the money to build an underground cistern or a private water tower, this wouldn’t be an issue. But we don’t; so we need a less-expensive alternative. That’s actually easier to find than you’d expect. All you need is an above-ground swimming pool, which you can buy surprisingly inexpensively.

The chemicals used to keep the water clean for swimming, are the same chemicals that make it safe for drinking.

Harvesting Water

The two basic means of harvesting water are rainwater capture and putting in a well. In both cases, there are legal ramifications that you have to consider, depending on where you live. Some states don’t allow rainwater capture and others limit who can drill a well. So before making a decision on this, you have to see what your state allows.

I’ve never liked the government telling me I can’t do something, especially if that something doesn’t hurt anyone else. So, just as a thought for your consideration, if I lived in a state where they didn’t allow rainwater capture, I’d put it in anyway.

To keep anyone from knowing what I was doing, I’d bury the water barrels, making it look like I had nothing more than a French drain for my downspouts.

New technologies are emerging, which show considerable promise. These focus on extracting moisture from the air. If you live in an area with high enough humidity to have fog, you can build simple fog catchers, which will allow you to convert the moisture in fog into drinkable water.

Other, more complicated technologies allow for extracting moisture from the air, even when there isn’t fog. These are still expensive, as they are new, but prices should drop as they become more readily available.

Purifying Water

Any water you harvest needs to be purified, even rainwater. Birds tend to do things on the roof of our homes, which ensure that the rainwater we capture isn’t as clean as we might expect it to be. So don’t expect that water to be pure, if you haven’t purified it.

Likewise, well water can contain a considerable amount of bacteria, even when it comes from one of the deep aquifers. The only way of being sure that it is safe to drink is to purify it.

But water used for gardening, bathing, cleaning and flushing toilets doesn’t have to be purified. We use purified tap water for that now, just because it is cheaper to do that, than it is to put two water lines into every home, one for purified and one for non-purified water.

Be sure to have more than enough filter cartridges for your water filter, if you are using filtration to purify your water. Even the best cartridges only last so long, so put in a good stock.

Conserving Water

No matter what you do to harvest water from nature, it’s probably not going to be enough, unless you also work to conserve water. The 100 gallons of water, per person, per day, that Americans use, is the highest rate of water consumption in the world.

People in South Africa are given a breakdown of water usage, that comes down to 50 liters per day. That’s a mere 13.5 gallons!

Many survival instructors say that you need one gallon of water per person, per day, for survival. But that’s just taking into consideration the water you need for drinking and cooking. It also doesn’t take into account hot temperatures. If you live in the Southwest, limiting yourself to that quantity of water could cause you to suffer severe dehydration.

Is it possible to live on the 13.5 gallons of water that they are recommending in South Africa? Yes, it is. But it means making some serous adjustments to our lifestyle. Take bathing for example; the average American bathes daily, using from 17 to 36 gallons of water per day.

But people in poorer countries can’t use that much water. Even in Latin American countries where they bathe daily, the average water consumption is much lower, with bathing accounting for only a gallon or two of water per day.

One of our biggest water wasters is flushing the toilet. Older toilets use as much as seven gallons of water per flush, while newer ones can be as low as 1.6 gallons per flush. So, changing out toilets can drastically reduce the water consumption of your family.

The other thing that can reduce it is not flushing every time it is used. Urine is biologically sterile, so unless the urine concentration in the water reaches a point of causing it to smell, there is no reason to flush every time you urinate.

But we have a water user that’s even bigger than toilets; that’s our lawns. With the large lots that we typically have for our homes (based on a world-wide average) and the fact that we all seem to plant lawns, we use an enormous amount of water keeping that grass alive.

To provide your lawn with one inch of imitation rainfall requires 62 gallons of water for every 10’ x 10’ area. So you could easily go through several hundred gallons of water in one day, just by watering your lawn.

I’ve lived in a couple of different arid areas during my life and I remember water rationing. During the rationing, we were only allowed to water our lawns certain days or not at all. When you’re living in a hot climate anyway, not being able to water your lawn could be enough to ensure its death.

So How Should We React?

Potential water shortages, even severe shortages, are no different than anything else that you and I prepare for. Like other potential disasters, the key is to be as self-sufficient as possible. That’s the only real protection for ourselves and our families.

Taking the actions I’ve mentioned above, as well as others you can find in this website, will ensure that you won’t be standing in line for hours, waiting to be able to get your daily ration of a few gallons of water. You and your family will be able to live a much more normal life, even if everyone else is suffering.

That’s not to say that you should flaunt your relative wealth. Part of good OPSEC is living as much like everyone else as possible. If you’re watering your lawn and washing your cars, while everyone else is fighting to have enough water to drink, it will quickly become obvious that you have an abundance of water.

You can expect that to be immediately followed by a line of people forming at your front door, expecting you to share with them.

However, one way of hiding your wealth might be to co-opt your neighbors. If you have enough water to share, then why not share it with them? Allow them to get their water from you, rather than having to go to the water point and stand in line. Just make sure you know how much water you are able to produce and how much you can afford to give them.

Sharing your water with your neighbors could act to help protect you, as they would have a vested interest in your source of water remaining a secret. That has some real tactical advantages, especially since it will be much easier to co-opt their cooperation, than trying to hide what you’re doing from them.

Unless your OPSEC is perfect, you have to assume that your neighbors at least have some idea of what you’re doing.

Finally, whatever you do, don’t panic. Panicking will just make it more difficult to survive. Nobody can think clearly when they are in panic mode. But there’s really no reason for you to panic. You’re the one who knows what to do and has prepared to do it.

So, while everyone else is worried about how they’re going to survive, you don’t have to worry. All you have to do is put your plans into action and keep going forward. You’ll be all right.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Serial Killers Without Guns

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Everyone has heard the oft-repeated mantra of the left that “guns kill people.” Likewise, we’ve all heard the snarky responses that have been made to that, such as the ones about spoons making people fat and people having defective guns, because their guns have never killed anyone.

My personal collection of firearms falls into this category, as the only thing they’ve ever killed is a bulls-eye in a target. However, even though I’ve never fired a shot in anger, my guns have stopped two crimes, just because I showed that I was not an easy victim to take advantage of.

The reality is, killings happen and guns are often the tool that the killers use. There is no question that the modern gun is the most efficient weapon available to the average person, whether being used in the offense or the defense.

While our military forces have even more efficient weapons that pistols and rifles, these are denied to the public by their high price and laws restricting their ownership.

So, modern killers often use guns, simply because guns are efficient tools of war. But that doesn’t make guns killers. People are the killers and some percentage of our population has been killing their fellow man since Cain first realized that he could use a rock to bash in his brother Abel’s head (or however he did it). Cain didn’t have a Glock or an AR-15 to use; he probably didn’t even have a bow and arrow, so he used what he had at hand.

The problem isn’t the gun. As others have said before, guns are merely tools, no more able to commit crime than hammers are. And considering how many times I’ve hit my thumb with a hammer over the years, I’d say that hammers have a higher rate of hurting people than guns do.

But like the hammer, the gun can be used for good, just as it can be used for bad. As a weapon, it is as useful in the defense as it is in the offense. We can’t forget the neighbor who grabbed his personal AR-15 and ran to the aid of the people who were being killed in the Sutherland Springs shooting.

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Had it not been for some judicious marksmanship on the part of that hero, many more people might have been killed. The church was apparently only the killer’s first intended target, as proven by the huge quantity of ammunition he was carrying.

Every day, criminals are thwarted by good guys carrying guns. Some of those good guys also have a badge, but many more do not.

It has been proven that most gun-related crimes involve the use of guns that are purchased illegally; either on the black market or through what are known as “straw purchases.” While this doesn’t cover all murders, simply enforcing the existing laws on the books would greatly reduce gun-related crime.

That’s not to say that it would reduce crime though. Criminals are criminals and if they don’t have guns to use, they will use whatever weapon they can find. Criminals didn’t suddenly appear when guns were invented; they practiced their “profession” long before that time.

Guns just became their weapon of choice for the same reason they did for hunters; they’re easier to use.

Mass Murder and Weapons

The very same day that the Sandy Hook shooting happened (in 2014), a knife-wielding thug entered a school in China, killing more children than Adam Lanza did. But this wasn’t the worst knife attack in China that year, on March 1, 2014, 10 men, armed with knives, entered the Kumming train station, killing 29 and wounding 130 others.

Mass murder is mass murder, regardless of the weapon used. It is a horrendous event, regardless of who does it, where they do it, who the victims are or what weapon they hold in their hand. Yet it is guns that receive all the press, not because they are more deadly, but for political reasons.

Anything can be used to kill others, especially in the hands of a skilled individual. Martial arts weapons started out as tools, not weapons. They became weaponized in China, because the Japanese didn’t allow the Chinese to own swords. So they figured out how to use what they had.

This isn’t the only historic reference we can make to the use of tools as weapons. Many of the melee weapons used in the Middle Ages were tools as well, especially the “battle axe” and the “war hammer.”

While there were versions of these tools which were crafted specifically to be used as weapons, the majority of the peasantry merely used what tools they had at hand. Both axes and large hammers make effective weapons, if you don’t have anything better to use.

Hands and Knives

The same is true of murderers. Some of the most infamous serial murderers in history didn’t use guns. Jack the Ripper, for example, used knives on his victims; cutting their throats and then mutilating their bodies.

Since the killer, who is believed to be a man, had a distinct physical advantage over his female victims, so a knife was clearly sufficient for his needs.

The Green River Killer, Gary Ridgway didn’t even need a knife in his own version of Jack the Ripper’s murder spree, he strangled them to death. Early on in his killing career he did this with his hands, but as he became more proficient, he used a ligature (a cord of some sort, used as a garrote).

Still the most prolific serial murderer in American history, Ridgway has been convicted of murdering 48 separate women, and the actual count is suspected as being over 90. His killings resemble those of Jack the Ripper in that most of his victims were sex workers and runaway teenagers, who he committed sexual acts with both before and after murdering them.

Medicines

Perhaps one of the most bizarre serial murder cases is that of Niels Hoegal, a German male nurse. While actively working in a hospital, fighting to save his patients’ lives, Hoegal was also killing them, and apparently doing so for the thrill of it. The thrill wasn’t of killing them, but of rescuing them from death; a death that he himself inflicted.

Hoegal’s weapon of choice was a heart medication called Gilurytmal. He would give patients an overdose of this medication, so that he could impress his colleagues by resuscitating them. But he was not successful in all cases, many died.

Apparently that was of no concern of his, even though he fought to save patients lives daily.

While this killer was only convicted of two murders, two attempted murders and one count of serious bodily harm, it is believed that he killed over 100 people over a six year period of time. The only reason why there are so few convictions is that most of his victims were cremated, making it impossible for forensic investigators to prove whether he killed them or not.

Cars, Trucks and Explosives

To those who think in terms of weapons, anything can be a weapon, even things that are not designed for the purpose of killing. Cars and trucks were designed for transport, yet many die from vehicle accidents. In 2016 (the last year for which complete data is available at this time) there were over 40,000 people who died in vehicular accidents.

When you take into consideration the percentage of these which were caused by drugs or alcohol, it is impossible to state those were merely “accidents.”

But vehicles can be used intentionally as weapons as well. Car bombings are not uncommon, especially in the Middle East, where terrorists have turned the car bomb into a fine art. Cars and trucks make it easy to transport the explosives, as well as providing extra shrapnel when the bomb goes off.

But vehicles can be used as weapons, even without the explosives. On December, 19, 2016 a terrorist drove a truck into a Christmas Market in Berlin. This act claimed 12 lives, including that of the driver the truck was stolen from, as well as an additional 56 others who were injured.

This violent act was clearly intended to be an act of war, motivated by ISIS and perpetrated by a failed Tunasian asylum seeker.

Another such example is Nice, France when in 2016 a cargo truck was driven in a crowd of people resulting in 86 people dead and 458 injured.

While serial killers who operate over years can claim high numbers of victims, perhaps the worst mass murders are committed not by firearms, but by explosives. This only makes sense, as explosives give the killer more bang for the buck.

They can kill more people in a single “shot” than would be even remotely possible with a firearm. This makes the actual number of victims dependent largely on the occupancy of the building at the time the bomb goes off.

The Oklahoma City Bombing in 1995 killed 168 people and injured more than 680 others. While the destructive force of the bomb was aimed at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City, a total of 324 other buildings, within a 16 block radius were damaged, some to the point of destruction.

One would think that such a massive explosion would require special methods and materials, and in fact, some special materials were used. But the vast majority of the explosive force came from common materials which are readily available, using formulas which have been readily available in open-source material since long before the internet made it possible to find them in seconds.

The Bath School Massacre

Then there was the Bath School Massacre of 1927, long before mass murderers became media celebrities. At that time, it was apparently possible to buy dynamite over the counter, without the restrictions that are in place today.

The killer, Andrew Kehoe, bought these in small increments, in various locations, over several months, eliminating any suspicion that he was buying them for nefarious purposes.

Those explosives were used to create four separate explosions, one of which did not detonate. The first was at his farm, using firebombs to destroy the house and outbuildings before attacking the school. But even before that, he started his killing spree, murdering his own wife a couple of days before setting off the explosion.

The planning of the operation, purchasing the explosive and planting them in the school took months. As a member of the school board, he had ready access to the school, allowing him to carry the explosives into the basement and prepare his bomb there.

The explosion of the bomb under the north wing of the school killed 30 people, mostly children, and injuring another 58, some of whom were maimed for life.

A second explosion was triggered by the killer a short time later, exploding his truck, which he had filled with explosives and shrapnel. Kehoe, the school superintendent and a few others were killed in this explosion.

The only reason more people were not, was because there were few people near the truck at the time.

A third bomb, consisting of 500 pounds of explosive, had been prepared in the south wing basement, which for some reason failed to detonate. Had it exploded, the casualty count would have been much higher and the building would have been completely destroyed.

Conclusion

It is clear from these examples that murderers, even the mass murderers of today, don’t need guns to accomplish their purpose. When people set out to kill others, they will find a way, no matter what. Making gun ownership illegal would do nothing more than make it harder for law-abiding citizens to defend themselves from these criminals.

Even within the realm of gun-related deaths, the statistics aren’t as clear as the gun control crowd would like to make it seem. The New York Times, arguably the most liberal newspaper in the country, reported that “more than 60 percent of Americans who die from guns die by suicide; but that fact is often overlooked” in their October 8, 2015 issue. If they are able to recognize this fact, why can’t others?

Again, eliminating gun ownership won’t stop suicide. There are more suicides committed by drug overdose every year, than there are involving firearms. That’s a rather amazing statistic, when you consider that 80% of suicide attempts involving a firearm are successful, while only 3% of suicide attempts involving drugs are.

So the actual number of attempted suicides by drugs is astronomical.

Do guns make it easier for people to commit suicide? Yes, they do. But again, the problem isn’t the guns, it’s the mental health of the people who commit the suicide. If access to guns was blocked, the only ones who that would stop are the impulsive suicides.

Maybe that’s a worthwhile goal, but it’s not worth taking away everyone’s Second Amendment rights to accomplish it.

Once again, if someone really wanted to commit suicide using a firearm, they could find one, even if guns were illegal. Criminals can buy guns in any country in the world, even those with the most restrictive firearm laws. If they can’t, it doesn’t take a whole lot of skill to craft a homemade single-shot gun that shoots shotgun shells. So criminals would have guns, but law-abiding citizens wouldn’t.

What the left really wants is one of two things, neither of which is beneficial to society and severely restricts our freedom. The first is to eliminate the physical laws which allow firearms to operate. That way, there would be no more guns.

Those who wish for this are the ones who don’t want firearms around, because they are afraid of them. It is a fear-driven argument, which has no basis in logic. I know people like this and they can’t articulate their reasons beyond, “I don’t like guns.”

But it is the other group that is ultimately the more dangerous. They want to concentrate all guns in the hands of the government. This has happened in various places and various times through the history of guns.

Each and every time it has led to a totalitarian government, where the common people didn’t have any rights at all.

These people are the politicians, bureaucrats and their lackeys. They want control and they want to take our freedom away from us. That’s what makes them dangerous and that’s what the Founding Fathers gave us our Second Amendment rights to protect ourselves against.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Earthquake and Tsunami Scenarios: How To Survive Natural Calamities

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Natural disasters are all scary; but one of the scariest ones to be caught in is an earthquake. There’s nothing else that compares with the stark terror that comes when the very ground starts moving underneath your feet.

Perhaps one of the things that makes that terror so real is that earthquakes come with no warning, unlike other types of natural disasters which at least give you a few moments for some last-minute preparations.

Earthquakes are caused by movement in the Earth’s crust. This relatively thin layer of rock and soil is broken up into many plates, which are wedged against each other, largely held in place by friction. But these plates are constantly in motion, slowly changing the geography of the Earth.

Since the edges of these tectonic plates are rough, they don’t slide against each other smoothly. Rather, they tend to catch and stick, until enough pressure builds up to cause them to move.

An enormous amount of energy is trapped in these plates, caused by the bulk of the plate moving, while the parts that are jammed against neighboring plates, at the faults, are stuck. When that energy reaches a critical point, it causes the stuck part to break and move, sending shockwaves through the ground.

The earthquake is actually those shockwaves, which are strong enough to cause the ground to heave and buckle.

It’s bad enough when this happens on dry ground, and can cause extensive damage. California has been plagued by such earthquakes through the years, because of the large number of fault lines running through the state.

But California is by far not the only place in the world that suffers from earthquakes, or even in the country.

But what happens when those earthquakes happen under the ocean? One would think that the lack of human structures would minimize the damage and that the massive amount of water in the ocean would absorb the shockwaves, without problem. But that’s not the case.

When an earthquake happens under the ocean, it causes the ocean floor to move up and down, just like it causes the land to move up and down. The water, seeking to maintain equilibrium, flows towards the epicenter of the earthquake when the ocean floor is at the low point in the cycle and away from the epicenter when the earthquake is at the high point in the cycle.

If you imagine pushing something like a bucket or ball down into the water of a swimming pool, you’ll see the same effect, just smaller.

In the ocean, we’re talking an enormous amount of water that is flowing towards and away from the epicenter. The larger the earthquake, the more water is displaced. This water has to go somewhere, and ends up forming concentric waves, radiating out from the epicenter of the earthquake.

These waves can reach well over 100 feet high, as millions of gallons of water are displaced.

Earthquakes aren’t the only thing that can cause tsunamis, although they are the most common. Landslides and volcanoes can also cause them, as both can dump huge amounts of rock and earth into the water, causing the same sort of displacement that causes a tsunami.

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Since 1950, there have been 33 recorded tsunamis, varying in location, height and damaged caused. Probably the most devastating of these was the 2011 earthquake off the Pacific coast of Japan, which caused a 33 foot high wave, killing 10,550 people and causing the meltdown of the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant. Effects of this tsunami are still being felt today.

Most recently, an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.9 off the coast of Alaska raised fears of a tsunami hitting the Alaskan coast on Tuesday, January 23rd. While this never materialized, a tsunami warning was issued and people living along the coast were forced to seek refuge.

The Destructive Power of a Tsunami

The power of moving water is incredible. The same substance we drink and bathe in is incredibly destructive in large quantities. When you’re talking about millions of gallons of water moving all at the same time, there is little that can withstand it.

Video taken of various tsunamis, such as the 2011 tsunami that hit the Northeast Coast of Japan, is much different than one would expect. Rarely is there the “massive wall of water” that people talk about. Rather, a tsunami hits the coast much like the ripples of the rising tide. However, unlike the tide, the water doesn’t recede. Instead, more ripples come along, making the water level rise even higher.

While some tsunamis can measure over 100 feet at the crest, many are much smaller, raising the water level to only a couple of meters above normal high tide. Even that can cause massive destruction, as it sweeps ashore, moving everything in its path.

The farther the epicenter is from land, the lower the waves will be when they hit shore. The 2011 Japan tsunami also hit the West Coast of the United States; but by the time the waves had crossed the ocean, they were much lower, preventing them from causing damage to California beachfront properties.

However, it doesn’t take a lot of wave height to cause massive damage. Any water that spills over a sea wall or that goes farther up the beach than normal high tide, is likely to encounter things that were not built to withstand the force of being hit by water. Those things are likely to be carried off entirely by the water.

Video taken when the tsunami came ashore in Japan shows it floating away vehicles and entire buildings.

Protecting Yourself from a Tsunami

Anyone living near the coast needs to be concerned about the possibilities of tsunamis. While they are not common, they are common enough and destructive enough that it is necessary to be prepared to survive one. That starts with knowing how far above sea level you live.

Tsunami warnings will usually indicate approximately how high the waves are, allowing you to make a determination of whether you are safe, in danger, or in the grey area in-between.

When I say “living near the coast;” that’s a relative term. There are places where you might live 50 miles from the coast, but still be less than 100 feet above sea level. If that’s the case, you are near the coast. Base your proximity on the altitude above sea level, not the distance you would have to drive to the beach. Water doesn’t care about distance; but it does care about altitude.

While tsunami warnings will not always be accompanied by a government-mandated evacuation order, they should be taken as such by anyone living near the coast who is within or even near the danger zone. There aren’t any second chances with tsunamis.

There isn’t any safe bug in option in this case. Homes may be washed away or destroyed by the flooding. Bunkers will be flooded. No matter how much work you put into making your home a survival retreat, none of it will do you any good in this scenario.

About the only buildings which are safe during a tsunami are large, multi-storied concrete structures, with firm, deep foundations. But even that is risky, unless you are sure of the building’s design and specifications.

Some of the video from the Japan tsunami was captured by people who had retreated to apartment or office buildings that met this description. However, even though the water may not move the building, floating debris can break windows and cause serious damage to the lower floors of these buildings.

This is one of the disaster scenarios where you want to have a good bug out plan in place. As part of that, you’ll need a planned survival retreat that you can go to. That retreat should be stocked with food, water and other supplies, so that you don’t have to bring them with you.

As in any mass evacuation, travel will be difficult and roads will probably become blocked.

Plan on anything you leave behind being destroyed by the tsunami. If you have valuables which are uninsured, you may want to consider taking them with you, if you can. Of course, that depends a lot on the size of the valuables, how delicate they are and how many you have.

But if your home becomes washed away by the tsunami, even things stored in a safe will probably never be returned to you.

For Those Who Own Boats

Riding a tsunami out in a boat could be considerably safer than riding it out on land, assuming there is no massive wave to capsize your boat (there rarely is) and your boat is large enough for open ocean traveling. Boats don’t care much how deep the water is, as long as there is water under the keel.

This is not to say that taking a boat out to the open ocean during a tsunami is totally safe. Taking a boat out to the open ocean has risks at any time. But the risks during a tsunami are not a whole lot worse than normal boating, if some precautions are taken.

Specifically, the boat has to be pointed in to the waves at all time, to prevent capsizing and you have to manage to get far enough offshore, before the tsunami hits, so that the moving water does not drive you onto shore.

Large oceangoing ships are said to be safe in a tsunami if they are in at least 180 feet of water. So I would say that if this works for them, it would work for smaller vessels too. Whether or not you would be able to make it that far will depend on how much notice you get and how fast your boat is.

Probably the biggest problem for any boat owner will be returning to port. If the tsunami hits the port that the boat set sail from, it will probably be impossible to return to that port, even after the all-clear is given by officials.

There will most likely be extensive damage to the port, and even more extensive damage to the facilities behind the port. Therefore, it will be necessary for the boat to have enough range to reach another port, far enough away so as to not have been damaged by the rising water.

In any case, boat owners should not return to any port until an all clear is sounded. This will not happen until the tsunami has fully ended and the waters have subsided. At that point, and not until that point, it will be safe.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

How To Survive Stupid People

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Foreseeing disasters and preparing for them is what preppers do. I mean, that’s what makes us preppers, right? So we should always be looking forward, seeing the next potential disaster and trying to figure out how to survive it. While many of those potential disasters will never come to pass, the one that does makes it all worthwhile.

But all this looking forward can have its own consequences. We can end up having tunnel vision to the future, and end up not seeing what’s going on around us. We can be looking to see the zombie apocalypse that’s coming in the future, and because of that, not see the zombies walking all around us.

Yes folks, we are living in the midst of a zombie apocalypse right now, and we haven’t even noticed it. I am speaking, of course, of all the stupid people around us. You know what I mean… or at least I hope you do. Otherwise, you might need to check yourself… for you might be one of them.

Trigger Warning: If any of you are stupid enough to not recognize that this article is satirical in nature, then you are at risk of being just the type of people who are likely to be qualified as stupid people. Beware! You are at danger of natural selection.

Please note that this article does not refer in any way to people who have a low intelligence quotient, more commonly referred to as the IQ. Rather, it is actually referring to people who have no common sense whatsoever; the other type of intelligence necessary for survival.

While common sense is by no means common, it is what protects humankind from destroying ourselves. Perhaps it is this lack of commonness, which is causing the downslide of said humankind.

The level of stupidity in the world is on the upswing. To prove this point, scientific studies have shown that functional illiteracy rates amongst industrialized English-speaking nations are on the decline. It’s not just here in the USA either; this phenomenon is happening in all of the major English-speaking countries, around the world.

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I’m not sure what’s happening in countries where English is a secondary language, because as best I know, no studies of this type have been done in those countries.

Some are proposing that it is the English language that is causing the dumbing down of these countries, but I beg to differ. There is ample evidence that this is all a part of a sinister government plot; one designed to make us all into slaves of the government, doing nothing more than what our betters in government service tell us to do and not doing anything they don’t tell us to do.

Just look at all the stories on the Internet that are talking about nefarious actions on the part of our government to dumb us down. I’ll mention just four here:

  • Fluoride in the water, which has been shown to destroy brain cells, is common throughout the United States. The excuse for this is to improve dental health. But if that was true, then why doesn’t our water carry things to heal us of other diseases as well?
  • Smart-meters, which are replacing normal power meters, and surrounding us with a field of electromagnetic radiation, as if our smartphones weren’t already sending enough electromagnetic radiation into our brains to damage them.
  • Chemtrails, where the government is forcing the major airline companies to poison us, putting chemicals in the upper atmosphere, so that they will fall down upon us. We have all become human lab rats, part of a great experiment to turn us into the walking brain dead.
  • Common Core curriculum, which teaches children how to come up with the wrong answers to math problems and penalizes them for being right about just about anything.

The list goes on and on. Secret and secretive forces in our government are clearly bent on nefarious purposes; ones which will turn us all into mindless slaves, just like the dumb people all around us.

Just look at how people live their lives today. The average stupid person lives like little more than a two-legged animal. Perhaps that’s why they are referred to as “sheeple.” They get up in the morning, eat and dress. Then it’s off to work at some mind-numbing job which hasn’t yet been replaced by a computer.

After work, it’s home to eat again, then sit in front of the boob tube, mesmerized by images of actors and actresses acting dumb for big bucks. TV programming is available around the clock, so that those who have insomnia can continue living their lives vicariously through the actors, rather than living a real life of their own.

Eventually it’s off to bed, resting in preparation of another day of work and television.

You call that a life? I suppose if you’re a cow it is. Eat, work and sleep; that’s it. Not much of a requirement for a brain in all that. Definitely no need for any form of higher thought. They can dumb us down, and still get the day’s quota of work out of us.

One Potential Solution

There is one potential solution, which has been offered to solve the problem of all the stupid people who are taking over the world. That’s to simply remove all the warning labels off of products and outlaw warning statements like, “don’t try this at home” on YouTube videos.

That one simple act could have far-reaching consequences, allowing natural selection to once again take over.

In case you’re not familiar with the concept of natural selection, it’s part of Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. Put simply, it states that only the best and strongest of a species survive, while the weaker members of a species die off due to natural causes, such as being hunted by predators.

This process “cleanses” the gene pool of defective genes, allowing future generations to inherit the stronger genes and have a better chance of survival.

This is a slow process, simply because dumb people and animals tend to breed rapidly, even more rapidly than their more intelligent counterparts. With little else to occupy their minds, it is easy to turn to thoughts of sex, simply for entertainment.

Little in the way of morals impedes these thoughts, so the dumb people seek each other out, rather than forming lasting relationships with more intelligent people and with purposes beyond just sexual pleasure.

Currently, product liability lawyers and our government are interfering excessively with the process of natural selection. By mandating warning labels, many of the products and activities that would naturally work to eliminate these stupid people from the gene pool are prevented from doing their job.

Those warnings provide excessive protection for these lower forms of life, allowing them to continue living and breeding, filling the Earth with more stupid people.

Eliminating these warning labels would merely return things to how they should be. Stupid people would do what stupid people do best… stupid things. While it would be unfortunate for the stupid people in question, this would then cause the aforementioned cleansing of the human gene pool over the next several generations.

The trick to putting this plan into operation is to eliminate the armies of product-liability lawyers, lobbyists and of course legislators who think it is their divine responsibility to protect people from themselves. No solution to this part of the problem has yet been proposed.

What to do with Stupid People

Since we can’t just eliminate stupid people, or rather, allow natural selection to eliminate them, we must find more subtle ways of dealing with them. Avoidance is a good method, but the problem there is that stupid people are everywhere, making it very hard to avoid them.

The current political climate makes it impossible to force these people to identify themselves, perhaps by wearing some sort of tag with their IQ listed on it in bold numbers. But even if that were a possible option, it really wouldn’t help, because there is no known CSQ (common sense quotient) or means of testing for it.

As it is really these people with a low CSQ that are the problem, such an identifier would be necessary so that we could avoid them.

Unfortunately, there is no outwardly visible sign of people with a low CSQ, so we can’t just watch out for them and avoid them. The only way to find out if someone has a low CSQ is to spend enough time with them, that you can observe their actions and reactions, seeing times when common sense would dictate a particular course of action and noticing that they don’t avoid it.

Once that happens, it is best to find something harmless for these people to do, in order to prevent them from causing further problems. Since it is still considered murder to eliminate them as a risk to society, we cannot use that as an alternate means of cleansing the gene pool. Rather, we must direct them towards activities that will keep them from causing problems for everyone else:

  • Put them in a round room and tell them to sit in the corner.
  • Give them a bottle of “experimental” shampoo and tell them to wash their hair, following the instruction on the bottle to the letter… lather, rinse, repeat.
  • Get them a job cleaning the bottom of swimming pools, but don’t give them the normal tools, which allow them to clean the pool from the level of the deck around it.
  • Put them to work reviewing television programs.
  • Put them to work reviewing electronic games.
  • Send them on a jackalope hunt, to remove this dangerous pest.

There are many other similar activities which can be used in the same manner. Any thinking person can come up with a list of them, rather easily.

Always Assume the Worst

Considering the high number of stupid people we find in the world today, life can be extremely dangerous. One never knows when a stupid person might jump up right in front of them, doing something stupid that could cause them harm.

It’s bad enough when these people do things to hurt themselves, but all too often they get away scot-free, not even realizing that they’ve caused a problem. It’s the other people, normal intelligent ones with a high CSQ who end up suffering the consequences of their actions.

The only real solution to this problem, other than herding all the people with low CSQs into a large penned-in area and keeping them there, is to do what I taught my children to do, when I was teaching them to drive. That is, always assume that the other person is going to do something stupid.

That way, when they end up doing something stupid, you’re ready for it.

This simple philosophy has saved me from countless dangerous situations created by stupid people. I don’t just apply it when I’m driving, but in all situations. I literally walk through life, watching to see what stupid things others are going to do.

Of course, part of the process here is using my superior brain power to not only think of the stupid things they might do (and I’ve got to say that some of these people can be brilliant in coming up with stupid things to do), but in coming up with my own response to their actions, should my supposition be proven true and I find that they truly are stupid people, doing stupid things.

Those of us who have seen the latest Sherlock Homes movies, with Robert Downey Jr. playing Sherlock, have seen this in action. In a number of cases, the great detective thinks through a pending conflict, foreseeing the actions of the stupid people and developing his responses.

Then, when the stupid people do what stupid people do, he is ready to counter their actions, sallying forth victoriously.

Of course, that’s a movie and you and I must deal with these things in real-life and real-time. That’s a bit harder, as we don’t have script writers to help us. Nevertheless, with a little practice, we can master this ability. Start with something simple, like driving; and then allow yourself to apply the method in other parts of your life.

Don’t Let Yourself Become One of Them

The worst thing that can happen to any of us is to become one of them. I know that’s a scary thought, but if you spend enough time watching television or playing video games, it could happen. Even the smartest amongst us are capable of becoming zombies, if we allow ourselves to succumb to the “entertainment” of today, which is all intended to dumb us down.

The key to avoiding this is to use your brain. After all, it really was created to do more than just fill up the space between your ears. So exercise it. Force yourself to think. Find activities which require thinking and do them. What activities? Things like:

  • Reading
  • Learning to do something new
  • Practicing a new skill that requires thought and concentration, like shooting
  • Watching the opera
  • Listening to classical music
  • Making things with your hands
  • Speaking with foreigners, in another language

Again, there are many possibilities, limited by only your own imagination and curiosity. Let that curiosity loose and follow it where it might lead. The worst that could possibly happen is that you find out that you have already succumbed to becoming one of them, and end up hurt for doing something that you really shouldn’t have tried doing.

Granted, the ideas I’ve mentioned there deal with the IQ and not the CSQ, but that’s alright. While there is not actual correlation between the two, the things I’ve mentioned as possible activities require more than just thought; they require action on your part.

Doing activities which require you to do something more than just think, while also requiring you to think, have a high probability of increasing both your IQ and your CSQ. Activities which just require thinking, such as purely academic pursuits, will not increase your CSQ, even if they do increase your IQ.

Avoid at all costs institutes of higher learning. They have been taken over by people who are severely lacking in CSQ. That’s a direct result of the saying, “Those who can, do; those who can’t, teach.” Our institutes of higher learning are filled with people who can’t… so they are teaching.

You can’t learn common sense, from someone who doesn’t have it. If you want to learn more on how to survive anything, this is just the thing.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Should The United States Go To War?

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For all of my adult life, I’ve heard the Republican Party being accused of being war mongers. Obviously, these accusations come from people who are not Republicans and are done with the intent of making Republicans look bad.

But of the 14 international wars that United States armed forces have participated in since the Civil War, the split is exactly even between Republicans and Democrats.

However, if we look at the cost of those wars, especially the cost in human lives, the scale has to come down on the side of the Democrats. I say that because there were Democrat Presidents in office at the beginning of most of the bloodiest wars that we have participated in, specifically World War I, World War II and the Korean War.

So the idea that Republicans are war mongers and that Democrats are peace-loving people just doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. Republicans do stand for a strong military, while Democrats tend to hate the military and reduce their funding.

The Republican idea is to have a strong enough military that we don’t need to get involved in wars, simply because nobody would want to take the chance of fighting a losing war with us.

Nevertheless, the idea of Republicans being war mongers prevails and is widely touted as fact. Perhaps this is, at least in part, because the people propagating that narrative are mostly in the news media, and as we all know, they are over 90 percent Democrats, who are more interested in spreading anti-Republican propaganda than they are in real news.

War and the Economy

Part of this narrative is that Republicans use wars to boost the economy, while Democrats are perceived as being able to boost the economy without wars. While there might be some truth to that statement, it is largely coincidental, rather than actual.

Changes to the economy generally happen slowly enough, that they aren’t realized during the tenure of a sitting president, but rather appear years later, during another presidency.

One prime example of this is the financial crisis caused by the bursting of the housing bubble. This came about because of banking regulations passed during Clinton’s presidency, which allowed accelerated rate loans and bubble loans for home mortgages.

These loans were a boon to the housing business, increasing the number of new homes built and homes bought, key economic indicators that made the Clinton presidency into an economic “golden age” for the country. But as we all know, when those balloon payments came due, people couldn’t afford them.

Not only that, but housing prices had artificially risen to the point where many people couldn’t refinance their homes. So the bubble popped during the end of Bush the second’s presidency, sending our economy into the most serious recession since the Great Depression.

On the other hand, there is one thing that a president is able to do, which can immediately stimulate the economy. It’s actually more along the lines of public relations than anything else. That is, the president can do a lot to increase public confidence, specifically confidence in the economy.

When they do, it always results in a boon to the country’s economy.

Bill Clinton did this quite effectively, which explains why the years of his presidency are looked at as “golden years” for the nation’s economy. It looks like President Trump is doing so as well, especially as people are starting to realize the impact of the recent tax reform package that he signed into law.

Why War for the Economy?

What makes war look like an economic boon is the vast amount of money the government has to spend to fight a war. War is expensive business; just ask any Democrat you meet. They can probably quote you figures on how much the “War on Drugs” has cost us, just looking at the wars in Afghanistan and Iran.

They blame the national debt on this, even though those wars only account for a small portion of the national debt.

Actually, the idea that wars boost the economy hearkens back to the early days of the last century, especially the years of World War II. President Franklin Roosevelt has been quoted as saying during that time that as much as 40% of the country’s GNP would have to go into war production.

Winning the Second World War was a national goal, with pretty much the whole country pulling together to help ensure that win.

This Could Kickstart World War Three

Many of the country’s great corporations were built from infancy to mega-corporations on government contracts issued during that time. Aircraft manufacturers, shipyards and automotive companies received purchase orders to build all they could on a “cost plus 10 percent” basis.

With guaranteed profits like that, massive investment was made into those companies manufacturing capability, which continued to help them once the war was over.

Keep in mind that the country came out of the Great Depression the same year that World War II started. While it wasn’t until later that we entered the war, it is fairly widely known that FDR was working behind the scenes to support the allies as much as possible and to get the US into the war.

Public opinion prevented our entry into the war though, until the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.

World War II did boost the nation’s economy; much more so than any war before or since. Yet even smaller wars have helped the economy, simply by increasing military spending. With the military paying top dollar for everything, any company that has military contracts benefits from war.

That benefit then spreads through the rest of the economy, as those companies and their employees spend their profits.

But Start a War for Profits?

The very idea of starting a war for financial profits is just about as cynical as you can get. Perhaps that’s why Democrats make so many accusations against the Republicans for doing just that. Democrat politicians are masters at smear campaigns and saying that George Bush started the war in Iraq (for example) just for financial gain, protecting his family’s financial interest in the oil industry, is a great way of making Bush, and by extension all Republicans look bad.

Starting a war for financial gain is probably the ultimate way of saying that some lives are more valuable than others. It is saying that some people have to die, so that others can make a profit. While I have no doubt that there are people in the world who see things that way, I seriously doubt that our country’s political system would allow them to ascend to high office.

One little detail that most people forget is that the President doesn’t have the power to declare war; that power belongs to Congress. The President is the Commander in Chief and the War Powers Act does allow the president to send troops wherever he sees need, in the national interest.

But that is a limited power. He (or sometime in the future, she) can only do that for a maximum of 30 days. If Congress doesn’t agree with the president in that time, they have to recall the troops.

So, there are checks and balances against even an evil person who attains the presidency, using that position for personal gain in this manner. They would have to convince over half of Congress that there was a necessity for the war and that it would be right for the United States military to continue participating in it.

Of course, the conspiracy theorists will always have an answer for this, telling how manufactured evidence was created to sell Congress on the idea. But that’s a whole lot harder to accomplish than they believe. The number of people who would have to be involved in such a deception would ensure that the truth eventually came out. Their “unnamed sources” don’t count.

It’s a Moral Issue

Ultimately, going to war or not going to war is a moral issue. Throughout history, there have been kings and rulers who chose to go to war for personal gain, conquering new lands to expand their empire. But the United States has never done that. Our wars have been fought on moral grounds.

Even the Revolutionary War and the Civil War were fought on moral grounds. We fought the Revolutionary War to gain our freedom, when Great Britain was levying taxes on the colonies, without giving our forefathers representation in Parliament. That was a moral issue.

While the Civil War was fought for a number of reasons, one of the central ones was over slavery. That’s a moral issue as well. Granted, both sides thought that they had the moral high ground, but it was still a moral issue.

Oh, there are wars that we have been involved in, which can be stated to have a non-moral basis, such as the Whiskey Rebellion and the Indian Wars. I won’t argue that. But by and large, when the United States has gone to war, it has been for the protection of our land, our rights, our freedom or that of other countries around the world.

With this in mind, the very idea of starting a war, just to boost the economy is ridiculous. It goes against the American psyche; against our character; against who we are. Yes, we will use war to profit economically, in any way that we can. But that’s not the same as starting a war for financial profit.

But There’s Another Reason

Anyone who is really watching the economy, rather than just listening to the talking heads on the Democrat propaganda machine, otherwise known as the mainstream media, knows that we don’t need to go to war in order to boost the economy; it’s already receiving a much-needed shot in the arm.

It’s called “the Trump effect” and it started as soon as the results of the 2016 presidential election were in, before the inauguration. President Obama had been so anti-business, that companies were hoarding their profits and moving them overseas.

Little business expansion was happening, because companies with the means to expand were unsure of the business climate. They didn’t want to invest in what could very well be a losing venture.

Business is risky enough as it is. Any experienced businessperson knows how to reduce their exposure as much as possible. So they look for sure things or at least as sure as they can find. A stagnant economy, where the administration is anti-business is not a good place to invest. New regulations could shut down that business opportunity, before it could begin to show a profit.

But Trump is a businessman, who understands business. His pro-business stance has been clear from the very beginning of his campaign. One of his campaign promises was to reduce government regulation, something that he started on as soon as he was sworn in to office. That, in turn, has given corporate boards and private businessmen the confidence to start investing in our economy once again.

Add the recent tax reform to that raised confidence and it’s no wonder that the stock market is riding at record highs, companies are giving bonuses to their employees and major corporations are investing in new facilities, infrastructure and products.

Of course, you don’t hear about this in the mainstream media, because that would make Trump look good, something they can’t tolerate. But it is the truth. Donald Trump has managed to do what Barack Obama couldn’t do, turn the economy around. Rather than a slow recovery from the 2009 recession, we are now seeing a real growth in the economy; one that it looks like we can expect to see continue.

So no, there really isn’t any reason to go to war, at least not to boost the economy. There is enough happening already on that front, without even thinking about using a war for economic gain. If we do go to war, it will have to be as it was in the past, a war to fight injustice in the world; perhaps a continuation of the War on Terror.

But whatever it is, it will be based upon the principles this country was founded upon, not on furthering progressive policies or lining someone’s pockets.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

The Worst 5 Things You Can Do When Threatened By Mudslides

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Recently, Southern California has been being hit by a spate of deadly mudslides. Video available online shows rivers of mud careening down streets, carrying cars along in the flow. Twenty people have been confirmed killed and 28 injured, with 8 more people unaccounted for at the time of this writing.

While not on the top of most people’s disaster risk checklist, mudslides are extremely dangerous. We can see that by looking at what is happening in California. But as mudslides go, these have been rather minor. In 2010, a mudslide swallowed an entire town of 300 homes in the state of Oaxaca, Mexico, as people slept in their beds.

Rescue efforts were hampered by damage to the roads, which had to be cleared before workers could get to the town.

Mudslides, like avalanches, can happen very quickly, giving little to no notice. But that doesn’t mean that we never have any idea that a mudslide can occur. Certain conditions are required to cause a mudslide and those are well understood.

The technically name of a “debris flow” is probably a better description, than the more common term of “mudslide.” That’s because a mudslide will carry along any loose debris it can find. If you’ve ever seen a flood or a raging river, you should have a pretty good idea of the power that massive amounts of water can have.

Just turn that water into mud, which buries everything in its path, and you’ve got a pretty good idea of what a mudslide is, even if you’ve never seen one.

Video first seen on Fox News.

So what causes these natural disasters? As we all know, mud is made up of soil and water. What’s required to create a mudslide is lots of water and an area of loose soil that the water can soak into. If that area of soil is on a hillside and there’s nothing to keep it from flowing downhill, it can easily turn into a mudslide, taking boulders, trees and anything else it can find along with it.

The lack of anything to stabilize the mud is a critical component of mudslide formation. The roots of grass, trees and other plants do much to stabilize the ground and prevent erosion. When those are eliminated, there is little to ensure that a mudslide can’t happen.

So if you live on a mountainside or at the base of a mountainside, and the power company comes along and clears a swath of trees uphill of you, so that they can put in a new power line, you need to be aware that they may have just created the opportunity for a mudslide.

The same can happen in many other ways, such as if someone builds a home uphill from you. A forest fire can even create the conditions to make a mudslide possible, burning off the plant growth that stabilizes the hillside.

Of course, mudslides need a mountainside to form. So you’re not in much risk if you happen to live in the middle of America’s Breadbasket. But anyone who lives in mountainous areas or at the foot of a mountain should understand that mudslides are a very real risk. The steeper the mountainside is, the greater this risk becomes.

Be aware of the risk your home has of being caught in a mudslide. Look at what is uphill from you and how well the soil is stabilized. If you are unsure, ask for help from the U.S. Geological Survey or your county Geological Survey office.

They can tell you if your home is in a location with a potential for mudslides or not. Also keep your eye on any construction uphill of you, as that increases the risk.

What do You Want to Avoid?

Okay, so let’s say that you’re doing all that, and a mudslide comes. What sorts of things do you want to avoid doing, so that you don’t end up becoming one of those statistics?

Being Unaware

Awareness is the key to avoiding being caught in a mudslide. Not only do you need to be aware of whether or not you are in a mudslide-prone area, you also need to be aware of the weather. Mudslides need massive amounts of water to form.

They are typically caused by massive amounts of rain, such as that which a hurricane brings. That’s what happened in Oaxaca, Mexico. Rain from a hurricane pelted the mountainside, weakening the soil and eventually causing the mudslide.

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But rain is not the only weather condition that can cause a mudslide. The rapid melting of snow in the springtime can as well. In fact, any condition that can cause a flood, can also cause a mudslide. The only real difference is whether the water has enough dirt in it to turn it to mud.

A battery-operated NOAA weather radio will provide you with notification of any natural disaster, including the risk of mudslides. If a mudslide warning is given for the area in which you live, the best thing you can do is to put your bug out plan into effect.

Staying at Home

Mudslides are not the kind of disaster that you can count on riding out in your home, like some people try to ride out hurricanes. While the devastation caused by a mudslide is usually limited to a very small area, it is often total in that area. Several homes in California simply ceased to exist, when the mudslide hit them. There is just too much force in a mudslide for the average home to survive.

The other problem here is that mudslides happen rapidly. By the time you become aware that one is happening that could affect you, it is too late to evacuate. About the only thing that evacuation could possibly do is ensure that you are caught in the open, rather than in the relative safety of your home.

Sheltering in the Basement

With any mudslide, like any flood, you want to get as high as you can. The absolute worst place to shelter is in your basement or in an underground bunker. If the windows of your home break or if the mudslide manages to break through a wall, mud will begin to fill the basement, trapping you.

Can the mud break through a wall? Probably not… at least not by itself. But mudslides carry rocks, tree branches and even entire trees along with them. Those things can break through a home’s wall, even a brick wall when they hit with enough velocity.

If your home is two-storied, then shelter from the mudslide in the upper story, but don’t shelter in the attic, as you won’t have a means of escape. Even if your home is destroyed by the mudslide, chances are that the upper story will be carried away, floating on the surface of the mud. While that won’t be a fun ride, you should be able to survive.

Trying to Outrun it

You don’t want to be outdoors at all during a mudslide, unless you happen to be well away from where it is happening. Mudslides move rapidly, like an avalanche. There is no practical way you can count on outrunning it. Your only chance, if caught outdoors, is to find someplace to shelter. That means getting into a building and getting to an upper floor.

If you are forced to run, to get out of the path of the mudslide, then run crosswise, across the face of the mountainside. This will get you out of the path of the mud, raster than running downhill. The mud is going to take the easiest path downhill, so if you find yourself in a bit of a valley or canyon, try to get to a spot where you are on higher ground.

Going Back Home too Soon

Once the mudslide is over, our natural inclination would be to head right back home and see if our home has survived. If it didn’t, we’ll want to start salvage operations, finding what we can of our possessions, before it is too late. But that’s exactly the wrong action to take.

Remember, your life is worth more than any material possession that you own. Just because the mudslide has stopped, doesn’t mean that it is safe. Another mudslide can very easily follow the first, burying you, as you are trying to salvage your possessions.

Wait until officials tell you that it is safe to return to your home.

Preparing Your Home for a Mudslide

There isn’t a whole lot you can do to make your home more mudslide resistant. Your greatest protection isn’t the home itself, but where you have it located. If you’re looking to build or buy, take a critical look at the location, not only for protection from mudslides, but also from other potential disasters. Selecting the right location for your home or survival shelter can make a major difference in the home or shelter’s survivability.

If you already own your home and are concerned about the potential of a mudslide, you might want to consider building a concrete or concrete block retaining wall to help protect it. As you can see in the videos from the California mudslide, a normal fence isn’t going to do much to protect you.

But a well-built cement wall, with a firm foundation, can turn that mudslide aside, seeking a route around your property, especially if it is built at an angle to the natural flow of the mud.

Another useful home-building tactic, which can help with a number of different disaster scenarios, is to have your home’s plumbing and lines modified to have flexible fittings. PVC pipe is already somewhat flexible, but PVC connectors aren’t. Flexible connectors can help ensure that your pipes don’t break, if you are ever faced with a natural disaster.

Finally, be ready to treat any injuries that family members and neighbors incur. A good trauma first-aid kit and the knowledge to use it properly, can save lives. No matter how quickly rescue workers can get there, you’re already there.

So whatever first-aid you can render, will increase an injured patient’s chances of survival.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Survival Lessons To Learn From The Hawaii Missile Alert

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For the last year, tensions have been running high between the United States and North Korea. Increased missile testing by North Korea, with each generation of missiles being more capable than the last, has turned the age-old North Korean threats of nuclear war into a reality that can’t be ignored. Government officials at all levels are renewing emergency plans for nuclear war.

In this, we have returned to the Cold War with the now-defunct Soviet Union. The threat of thermonuclear war, between what were then the world’s two superpowers, caused emergency agencies to stay on their toes, ever watchful for a missile launch that could indicate the end of the world. That sort of watchfulness has once again become real in organizations like NORAD and the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency.

Reinstating Cold War policies means reinstating the necessary systems, as well as testing those systems. It was a simple error in such a test which triggered panic in the Hawaiian Islands on Saturday the 13th. An employee coming on shift ran a test drill of the Emergency Missile Warning System, a normal part of his duties since last November.

But this time, the test went awry. A simple operator error, making the wrong selection off of a drop-down menu on a computer screen, sent the citizens of that state into panic. Rather than selecting “Test missile alert” the operator selected “Missile alert” the type of mistake we all make on our computers on a nearly daily basis.

Of course, when you and I make that sort of mistake, all we usually need to do is click on undo on whatever computer program we are using, in order to rectify the problem. But in this case, there was no undo. The warning went out across the state, informing everyone of a non-existent inbound missile.

One would think that it would be hard to make such a mistake, but in today’s computerized world, it is actually much easier than ever before. While the computer program had one of those infamous “Are you sure” dialog boxes for the operator checked that as well, quite possibly without even reading it.

Since there was no second person in the loop as a fail-safe, the alert went out, creating panic.

Sadly, but predictably, those on the political left are following their mantra of “never let a good crisis go to waste” and blaming President Trump. But Trump had nothing to do with this; nor did the federal government.

The only way the federal government was involved, was that FEMA had authorized use of their emergency notification system. But even that had nothing to do with the present administration, but rather, the past one.

That’s not to say that FEMA didn’t get involved. One of the problems that this false alarm brought to light was that there was no easy means in place to post a retraction. State officials, working with representatives of FEMA had to come up with a quick fix system to post that retraction, which delayed notifying the population of the error by 38 minutes (actually, very fast by government standards).

So there was no real emergency and no real danger at any point in the process, other than that caused by panicking people. Nevertheless, it was a unique situation and one that we can learn from. So, what sorts of lessons can we find in this blunder?

First of All, Missile Threat Warnings

The task of notifying the population of an inbound nuclear missile is a huge one. There are over 320 million people in our country that would need to be notified. About the only good thing that can be said is that the federal government has had decades to develop, implement and test the necessary systems.

Even so, I’m sure that there are parts of the country, where people would not be informed.

The entire process starts with a worldwide network of sensors, including satellites. These monitor the surface of the earth, looking for missile launches, nuclear explosions and other events that could pose a threat to the United States.

All this information goes to NORAD, which is once-again housed in their bunker under Cheyenne Mountain.

NORAD’s job is to inform the military and the executive branch of the government, specifically the president, of any launches. They then monitor the launch, projecting the course of the missile and determining where it will land.

But this takes time. The mathematics of ballistic flight are well known, but they have to have enough of a course track to make that determination. So, the first notice that goes out is just a preliminary warning. At that point, they usually don’t even know if it is aimed at the United States.

As the minutes pass, NORAD is able to refine their information and projections. But it can be 10 to 15 minutes before they can identify the exact city that a missile will hit, assuming that it is fused for an airburst in the lower atmosphere. If it is fused for the necessary high-altitude burst to cause an EMP that would blanket the country, they might not know until the bomb goes off.

Missile flight time from North Korea to the central United States is roughly 38 minutes. If you shave 10 to 15 minutes off of that, by the time that the exact point of impact is known, and another few minutes to make the decision to inform the public and get the orders out, by the time the FCC’s Emergency Alert System is put into action, you and I will receive only 15 to 20 minutes of notice, before the nuclear bombs on those missiles go off. That’s it.

The Emergency Alert System uses radio and television to get the word out about pending nuclear strikes and other emergencies. In addition, FEMA’s Integrated Public Alert & Warning system (IPAWS) sends out alerts via text message, the internet, through landline phones and digital highway signs. This ensures the maximum number of people are informed as quickly as possible.

This same system allows emergency information to be sent out for other types of emergencies as well, but those are not our concern at this time.

How to React to a Missile Warning

Missile alerts are general. In other words, we will have no way of knowing how large the warhead is or how it is fused for detonation. So we have to assume the worst and take action based upon that. As the government’s emergency notification systems are geographically specific, receiving a notification means that it is coming towards you, not heading somewhere halfway across the country.

There are two parts to surviving conventional nuclear war: surviving the blast and surviving the fallout. Either one can kill you, even though one will kill you much quicker than the other.

A nuclear blast emits several different types of energy, but for our purposes the important ones are heat, radiation and blast (wind). The farther you are from the point of impact, the lesser any of these will be, but severe damage and injury can still happen as much as 20 miles from the point of impact, depending on the size of the nuclear device and the altitude that it is detonated at.

You should be able to make a guess on how close you are going to be to the blast, based upon the potential targets in your area and where you live. If there are military targets in your city, then you would measure your distance from those targets.

If your city is being attacked as an attack against the civilian population, then the explosion would probably take place downtown, so the farther you are from downtown, the better.

In any case, your best protection is to be underground, in a prepared shelter or bunker. If you don’t have a bunker available, the basement of your home is a good second choice. Likewise, the basement of an apartment or office building will offer more protection than being above-ground. Even an underpass or tunnel offers some protection from a nuclear explosion.

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So the key thing to do, when you receive notification of a ballistic inbound, is to get underground. If you can’t, then seek shelter behind a stout barrier (like a concrete retaining wall), putting the barrier between you and the likely point of impact.

You’ll want to stay in your shelter until after the blast, the wind following the blast and the return wind, as air collapses back to the point of impact. Like a wave approaching and receding from the shore, the windstorm that the detonation causes, radiating outwards from the blast, will return back to the original point of impact.

This is what causes the characteristic mushroom cloud of a nuclear blast.

That same shelter might serve well as a fallout shelter over the next days or even weeks. If you ended up sheltering outdoors, because there was no building nearby, you’ll want to find your way to indoor shelter as quickly as possible, so that you can wait out the fallout. Stay in that shelter until you receive the “all clear” order from the military or government officials.

The only exception would be if you come down with radiation sickness, in which case you should seek medical attention as quickly as possible.

Preparing for Conventional Nuclear War

With the short amount of notice that any of us would receive to an inbound nuclear attack, there really won’t be time to prepare. You’ve got to prepare a safe place to retreat to before such a warning were issued, or it will be too late.

As I already mentioned, the safest place you can be is underground, if at all possible. If you live in a part of the country where the homes don’t have basements, you’ll need to shelter in your home. That’s not ideal, but it’s still better than being out in the open.

You may end up staying inside that shelter for as much as 21 days, without coming out. So you will have to prepare everything you’ll need for surviving that 21 days and have it stored in the shelter. This includes, food, water, sanitary products, some means of disposing of human waste and whatever you will need to meet your family’s medical needs.

It would be a good idea to have a supply of potassium iodine in your shelter as well, along with dosage information for every member of your family. As with many medications, this varies by the individual’s weight. A good hand-crank radio to receive news and notifications over would also be useful.

Train your family of what to do, as well, especially your children. You won’t have time to go to their school and bring them home, unless you happen to live across the street from the school. Rather, you’re going to have to take care of yourself and expect them to take care of themselves.

Otherwise, if you try and rescue them, you might not survive to take care of them.

But if it’s an EMP Attack

While a conventional nuclear strike would be devastating, killing millions of people, that’s nothing compared to the devastation that a high-altitude EMP could cause. In such a case, there won’t be any huge boom, no flashing light in the sky, and no wind or heat to deal with.

All that will appear to happen is that the power will go out and every electronic device will stop working suddenly, even many that are battery powered.

The problem with an EMP isn’t surviving the attack, but surviving the aftermath. Without electricity, most of what we depend on to survive will no longer function. We won’t have heat and cooling in our homes, our refrigerators won’t work, city water service will come to a standstill, sewage lines will stop up and the stores will be empty.

This is probably one of the worst survival situations we can face. It would require becoming totally self-sufficient, harvesting and purifying our own water, growing our own food and heating our homes with wood fires. Preparing for such a scenario is a massive undertaking, one which several entire books have been written about.

One Final Word

As we can see from the false alarm that happened in Hawaii, our government officials aren’t perfect. They can and do make mistakes, just like the rest of us. The difference is, when they make those mistakes, it affects the lives of many more people.

The opposite can happen too. Before Hurricane Harvey reached Houston, city officials contemplated evacuating the city. They ultimately decided not to, because of the problems associated with the evacuation for Hurricane Rita, 12 years earlier.

That threat never manifested, which made the evacuation a greater danger to those who followed the evacuation order, than staying at home would have been.

So don’t just depend on the government to tell you what to do. Develop your own sources of information and make your own decisions. Yes, you will make errors too, but you might not make the same errors that the government is making.

 

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

DIY Survival Defense: Items You Can Turn Into Throwing Spikes

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Through the years, I’ve noticed preppers tending to fall into one of two categories, when it comes to self-defense.

The first category is the survivalists who are all about guns and bullets. Their self-defense strategy is to outgun the other guys by having more firepower. The second is into other types of weapons. While they might not be against firearms in general, they don’t want to depend on them for their survival.

I guess you could say that I’m part of both groups. I’m a big fan of guns, carrying concealed and stockpiling enough ammunition to get me through a small war.

But on the other hand, I would rather save my guns and ammo for a last line of defense. When it comes time for survival hunting or just defending myself, I’d rather use something that’s not going to make so much noise and attract so much attention.

So, while I carry concealed and make an effort to get to the shooting range every week, I haven’t limited my arsenal to only firearms. I carry a fighting knife, concealed, right alongside my pistol and I practice regularly with my bow and crossbow. Fortunately, I can do that in my backyard, rather than having to pay for more range time.

I am also constantly on the lookout for other weapons, either to add to my collection now or to make for myself, should the need arise. I believe that the ability to make weapons is an essential survival skill, especially if we are ever faced with a major disaster that takes down the grid or otherwise serves to disrupt society as we know it.

As part of this effort, I’ve made my own bows and arrows, experimenting with several ways of making arrowheads for your survival defense. I’ve also made a number of knives and other handheld weapons. This led me to looking into the idea of throwing spikes.

Click here to get your guide to a layered survival defense!

If you aren’t familiar with throwing spikes, they are a martial arts weapon, originating in the orient. It’s not sure whether they are an outgrowth of throwing knives or of throwing stars, as they are somewhat of a combination of the two.

There are several things that make throwing spikes attractive as a survival weapon. First of all, they are considerably easier to make than either knives or throwing stars, not requiring the fine degree of balance that a throwing knife requires and much easier to shape than a throwing star.

Secondly, a number of them can be carried quite easily, attaching a multi-pocketed sheathe to either the forearm, the belt or a tactical vest. Finally, they are small and lightweight, making it easy to carry a number of them, without them encumbering you.

One thing to keep in mind with throwing spikes, as with throwing knives or throwing stars is that Hollywood aside; you probably won’t instantly kill your opponent with them. These weapons are more disabling weapons, than they are killing weapons. But that’s okay. In a self-defense situation you don’t necessarily need to kill the person, you just need to disable them enough to allow you to escape.

Throwing Spike Design

There is some confusion on the internet over throwing knives, throwing stars and throwing spikes. That’s mostly because there is some overlap between their designs. Suffice it to say that all of them are pointed weapons, intended to be thrown a short range, by hand, in such a way as to stick firmly into the intended victim, causing them harm.

As I mentioned above, what makes throwing spikes attractive as a weapon for survival is the ease of making them.

Unlike a knife, there is no blade to sharpen, just a point. And unlike a throwing star, there is no complex shape to cut out. All you have to do is cut the material to length and sharpen it.

Throwing spikes can be single ended or double-ended. The only real advantage of a double-ended one is that you don’t have to worry about how you grab it. It will work the same with either end hitting. Some people like a tail or tassel on their throwing spike, which helps you to throw it straight; however, these weapons didn’t traditionally have any sort of tail.

The basic throwing spike is about six inches long and from 1/4” to 1/2” in diameter. Thicker spikes are heavier, requiring more strength to throw. At the same time, they have more momentum when they hit, so are likely to do more damage.

Making a throwing spike consists of cutting off the material to length and sharpening one or both ends. Cheap throwing spikes will only have a very short point, less than an inch long.

Ideally, you want that point to be at least two inches long, which allows it to be sharper, increasing the ease of penetration. The thicker the material used, the longer the point will need to be, in order to have the same angle.

Materials You Can Use to Make Throwing Spikes

Ideally, throwing spikes are made of a hardened tool steel. Soft, cold rolled steel, of the type you can buy at your local hardware store, can be used for practice, but you really wouldn’t want to use throwing spikes made out of cold rolled steel as a weapon. The tip would bend or break too easily. You need hardened steel, so that the point doesn’t bend.

This means either buying tool steel rod or using whatever readily available material you can find. One of your limiting factors here is going to be what you have to cut the steel with. The best thing to have is a band saw, with a metal cutting blade. Even if the band saw was not originally designed for cutting metal, it will still work, as long as you have the right kind of blade.

The other thing you’ll need to do, to use any power saw for cutting steel, is to cool the steel with oil. This will help prevent the metal and blade from overheating, which will cause the blade to go dull very quickly.

True metal-cutting band saws have a pump so that they can spray a cooling fluid onto the metal at the point of cut. But if you don’t have one of these, you can do a pretty good job by just spraying oil on the metal and blade every few seconds.

So, what sorts of makeshift materials can you scrounge to make your throwing spikes out of?

  • Broken screwdrivers
  • Hardened (grade 5 or 8) bolts
  • Leaf springs from cars
  • The rods from old shock absorbers
  • Engine lifter rods (these are just about perfect)
  • Metal-cutting files and woodworking rasps

If your tool collection is limited, you may want to stick to materials that are already about the right diameter, such as the engine lifter rods or broken screwdrivers, so that all you have to do is cut them to length and sharpen them.

Making the Throwing Spikes

There really isn’t much to making a throwing spike, as it is one of the simplest weapons there is. The first thing you have to do is cut it to length and the second is sharpen it. That’s it.

I have made knives using both a bench grinder and a bench-mounted belt sander. Of the two, I prefer using the belt sander, as it gives me a broader grind surface. This helps to control the cut better, providing me with a cleaner, non-segmented grind.

When using a bench grinder, there is a tendency to end up with a somewhat segmented surface, unless you are extremely careful and consistent in how you move the material over the grinding wheels.

No matter which you use, chances are that you will generate enough heat in the metal to turn the tip blue. This, or the metal turning red while grinding, indicate that you have lost the temper in the steel. So, once you finish grinding the spikes, you really need to temper them, once again.

Tempering will require a torch or forge, so that you can heat the metal up until it is red hot. Once heated, the metal is then quenched in an oil bath (not a water one). The oil absorbs the heat from the metal at a controlled rate, providing the final temper to it.

Video first seen on The Small Workshop.

Throwing Spikes

Throwing spikes are thrown differently than knives or stars. Typically with knives, you’re looking to flip the knife, spinning it into the target. Depending on the range to your target, you try to have from one to three flips, so that the knife arrives at the target point first.

Learning how to throw by both the blade of the knife and the handle allows you to go for half-flips, giving you more steps in the number of flips between you and the target.

But a throwing spike is thrown flat, not flipped. While this means that you won’t be able to throw it as far as a knife, it also means that you won’t have to worry about ensuring that it arrives point first; it will be point first from the time it leaves your hand.

The trick to throwing flat is the way you hold the spike. Rather than holding it between your thumb and forefinger, you hold your hand flat and allow the spike to sit against the flat of your hand, with your thumb holding it in place and the point about equal with your fingertips. This hold is critical to keeping the spike on a flat trajectory.

The throw itself is made by swinging the arm up, bending the elbow, so that the hand is beside the ear. From there, the hand is moved forcibly towards the target, as if you are trying to point to it. At the moment the arm is fully extended, the thumb releases the spike, allowing it to slide off the hand, directly at the target. Once released, the arm drops to the side in the “follow through” to the throw.

Please note that you will need some practice to get this technique right. It is actually easier to throw a knife by flipping it, than it is to throw a spike flat. But it is easier to get the spike to stick, simply because it will always hit the target point first, once you get the technique down. That is useful when you are in a rapidly changing situation, defending yourself.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Fighting Tax Reform. Is It Good Or Bad?

Probably the biggest legislative win for the American people in a long time was the tax reform bill recently passed by Congress and signed into law by President Trump.

This completes another one of Trump’s campaign promises, as well as the promise of many Republican lawmakers. Yet not everyone is happy with the tax reform bill.

Actually, the people who are unhappy with it fall into one of two categories: those who have been lied to and those who are doing the lying. 

Let’s start with those who have been lied to. Sadly, there are a lot of low-information voters in the country.

While those of us who are conservative tend to say that they are on the liberal side of the political spectrum, the truth is that most Americans would fit that description, regardless of where their personal political views fall on the spectrum. The truth is that few Americans are interested in politics anymore, mostly because they feel their interest is futile and their vote doesn’t count.

That’s a pretty sad indictment on our nation’s political system, in and of itself. What started out as a government by the people and for the people has truly become a government by the ruling class and for the ruling class.

Considering that the intent of the Founding Fathers was that there would be no permanent ruling class in our nation, this just shows how far we’ve fallen from our roots.

How To Build a Small Bunker in Your Backyard with $400

So, what’s the lie that’s being propagated in this case? It’s actually nothing new. In fact, it’s the same lie that the Democrat Party has used for years, whenever they wanted to attack Republicans about taxes. That is, the tax reform benefits the rich, by penalizing the poor.

This is an outright lie. To make it work, they have to do some pretty tricky manipulations of the numbers, but as everyone knows, you don’t get anywhere in Washington without learning how to do that.

So what’s the manipulation? That the tax reform passed by Congress reduces taxes for the wealthy, without reducing it for the lower and middle class.

Technically, that statement is true. It is true because wealthy people will be paying less taxes, while the poor won’t. But in order to be true, it has to ignore a much deeper truth.

That is, the people whose federal income taxes aren’t being reduced aren’t paying any federal income taxes at all. What that means is that they’re complaining that the tax reform doesn’t give these people money.

Democrat talking points are following this manipulation and telling people that the tax reform is going to raise their tax rates, to benefit the rich. Since that’s the narrative being followed by the mainstream media, that’s what most people think.

In fact, only 15% of the population currently believe that their taxes are going to go down. That’s a pretty effective propaganda campaign, no matter how you look at it.

Of course, this is a lie and like any lie, it can only last so long. Pretty soon people are going to start seeing the truth, either through a bigger paycheck or through their tax returns. When people have more money in their pockets, it’s hard to keep telling them that the tax reform has hurt them.

The Unhappy Elite

Democrat lawmakers are unhappy with the tax reform because it benefits corporate America and the owners of those corporations. These politicians have been pushing the narrative of the “evil corporation” and the “evil one percent” for so long, that they believe it themselves. Since those people are evil, anything done which benefits them must be wrong.

We’ve got to remember that the Democrat Party’s major thrust, ever since Donald Trump won the presidential election, has been to RESIST. That has become their byword and they intend to follow it, even if it means that they have to hurt the very people they’ve sworn to represent. Those people will just have to understand that their political masters understand what’s best for them.

This is pure hypocrisy, especially considering that Democrats look to those same wealthy people to foot the bill for their political campaigns and lavish lifestyles. But apparently that’s not a contradiction in a liberal’s mind. I’m not sure how they work that out, but somehow or other they do.

But there’s a much more serious problem for Democrats, one which they don’t know how to deal with. That’s the long-term fallout from the tax reform.

A former Clinton advisor has come forth, stating that he’s unsure how the tax reform will shake out with millennials, a very important voting block for the Democrat Party. They could turn Republican en masse, in response to finding that they have more money in their pockets.

If this were to happen, it would be devastating to the Democrats in the mid-term elections. Not one Democrat in the House or Senate voted in favor of the tax cut, which means that they didn’t vote in favor of lowering our taxes.

That’s not going to play out well for most of their constituents.

Corporate America

Leaving politics aside for a moment, the true reaction to the tax reform bill isn’t what’s happening in Washington, but what’s happening in the rest of the country. The stock market is reacting very favorably, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and other key indicators reaching record highs. Corporate America is responding favorably to the tax reforms, which lower corporate taxes considerably.

One hope is that the exodus of American corporations which we’ve seen throughout the Obama years will come to an end. Even better would be to see some of those corporations who have left turn around and come back home. That’s really what the corporate tax cut is aimed at, a calculated gamble that could pay off big.

But even without that, we’re already seeing a positive reaction out of America’s corporations, with over 100 publically announcing across-the-board raises or bonuses due to the lower taxes. After years of wages remaining stagnant, these raises and bonuses will be seen as a real cause for rejoicing on the parts of many working Americans, especially those in lower-wage jobs.

Understanding the Economics of Tax Reductions

Tax rates and tax reform is all about government revenue. Basically any government sits on top of society, skimming off the economy. They don’t do anything that produces wealth, but they have to have that wealth in order to function. So they tax those who do produce in order to have money.

Conservatives understand that if you kill the goose that lays the golden eggs, you don’t get any more eggs. So in an ideal conservative world, the idea is to provide a healthy atmosphere for the geese. That way, you get more eggs. Reducing taxes and reducing regulations are the two key ways that governments are able to provide a healthy atmosphere for the corporate geese.

That’s why Republicans push for lower corporate taxes and lower taxes on the rich. Those corporations and people don’t put the money they save on taxes in their mattresses, they invest it in making more money. In the process, they hire more people and pay more taxes. So, even though the tax percentage is less, the actual tax revenue is higher.

This may very well be counter-intuitive, which is why liberals have so much trouble understanding it. But past economic history proves it out. When taxes are low, investment increases, creating more profits. That works out to a bigger tax base.

So, skimming a smaller percentage of a bigger tax base works out to be more profitable for the government. At the same time, it produces a more positive atmosphere, which helps encourage investing in the economy.

Liberals, on the other hand, don’t understand economics in anywhere near the same way. To start with, they ignore who the wealth producers are. In their minds, it is the government, not private industry, which produces both jobs and wealth. All that private industry does is provide them with money to operate on.

Because of that, in their worldview, companies that keep their profits are evil, because the elite in government service could obviously make better use of that money, helping their constituents. So, the only evil thing about those corporations is that they want to keep their profit and decide how that profit is spent. If it is spent on helping people through social projects, they want to get credit for it, not allow some politician to take credit for it.

But isn’t this Economically Dangerous?

With the huge debt our country currently has, it would seem that reducing taxes is a risky move to make. Without that tax revenue, how is the country going to continue paying its bills, let alone not racking up more debt?

That’s a very good question, and one that has been raised in many quarters. The fact is, there is some risk in this move. Historically however, reducing taxes, especially corporate taxes, boosts the economy. This results in more overall revenue for the government, even with the lower tax rate.

President Trump and the Republicans in Congress are counting on this. But that’s not all that Trump is counting on. Ever since taking office, he’s been aggressively seeking to cut the federal budget and the federal workforce. While Congress hasn’t fully cooperated with him on this, there is still time.

One of the ways that Trump is reducing federal spending is by an effective hiring freeze. This doesn’t hurt anyone, as there are no actual layoffs happening. Rather, the federal workforce is being reduced by attrition, as people quit or retire.

So the increase in employment that we are seeing under Trump’s presidency is happening in spite of the number of federal employees diminishing. This is in direct contrast to Obama’s presidency, where the federal workforce increased dramatically.

If Trump can succeed in lowering federal expenditures significantly, while increasing revenues, he will have accomplished something big enough to qualify him as one of the greatest presidents in our nation’s history.

The Hypocrisy Goes On

The biggest hypocrisy in this whole debate (a debate that’s still going on, even though the issue is settled and the law has been passed) is that Democrat controlled California and New York are scrambling to protect the wealthy in their states.

The one group who suffers the most under this new tax package are people who have to pay over $10,000 per year in state income taxes. Under the new plan, they are only allowed to deduct the first $10,000 of their state income taxes from their income on their federal income taxes. This increases the amount of federal income tax these people are paying slightly.

You would think that this would make Democrats happy, as they are constantly trumpeting how the “one percent doesn’t pay their fair share,” something that in and of itself is a lie. Yet, both New York and California are seeking means to protect their one percenters from the evils of tax reform.

Video first seen on Fox Business.

The only people affected by these protections are those whose incomes are well above average. In California, you have to be making $140,000 per year, in order to have to pay $10,000 in state income taxes. New York is even higher, with residents needing to make over $170,000 to reach that threshold.

So these measures clearly aren’t to protect the poor, or even to protect the middle class, the people who the Democrats are claiming are hurt by the tax reform.

California

In California, plans are hatching for a political shell game. The covering idea is that the maximum state income tax that anyone will be required to pay is $10,000, to match what the new law allows in deductions. The rest of the state income tax can be paid as a “charitable contribution” to the state’s Excellence Fund. The state would then issue a tax receipt for their “charitable contribution.”

If this isn’t outright illegal, it should be. There is no way that this can be called a charitable contribution, especially since it is mandatory, not voluntary. The shell company being created for this is literally nothing more than a tax dodge.

It is no different than someone setting up an offshore banking account to hide their income and avoid taxes.

New York

New York is seeking a different way of protecting their wealthy, by replacing state income taxes with a “payroll tax” paid by employers. This one should be interesting, as over $60 billion of the state’s revenue comes from income taxes.

So, where is that $60 billion plus going to come from? The businesses; somehow, they have to come up with that much money, rather than people paying their own income taxes. This could be seen as a boon to the individual, but apparently New York’s Governor is suggesting that businesses lower people’s salaries, on order to be able to pay the payroll taxes.

Once again, we have Democrats contradicting themselves. The same political party who is pushing for a $15 per hour minimum wage, is telling employers to lower wages. The only way I can read this is that they’re expecting employers to do is lower the wages of everyone but people who are making $15 per hour or lower. While this will hurt upper management (part of the evil one percent), the people it will hurt the most are the middle class.

Congratulations Democrats, you’ve done it again!

Speaking of the Middle Class

Perhaps one of the best parts of the tax reform is something that should make just about any middle-class family happy… the individual mandate from Obamacare has finally been repealed. Of all the onerous legal mumbo-jumbo that Obamacare included, this has been the most odious to most people.

What this means is that the legal requirement to have health insurance or pay an annual fine is finally coming to an end. This should thrill countless middle-class families, who can’t afford health insurance, but are being forced into buying it anyway or pay the fine. Personally, this is the best part of the new tax plan for me.

I live close to Mexico, so my wife and I go to Mexico for all my healthcare needs. While there may be a few things that they can’t do for us, by and large, I’ve found the healthcare that we’ve received in Mexico to be excellent. It’s also a lot cheaper. That’s why I go there. But for the last few years, I’ve had to pay a fine, just to have that right. Now I will no longer have it.

While the Republicans in Congress haven’t yet fulfilled their promise to repeal Obamacare, this is a major step in the right direction.

I’m glad to see it happening and I hope to soon see more.

This article has been written by Rich Murphy for Survivopedia.

References:

http://money.cnn.com/data/markets/dowtrans/

http://money.cnn.com/data/markets/dow/

 

Fighting Tax Reform. Is It Good Or Bad?

Probably the biggest legislative win for the American people in a long time was the tax reform bill recently passed by Congress and signed into law by President Trump.

This completes another one of Trump’s campaign promises, as well as the promise of many Republican lawmakers. Yet not everyone is happy with the tax reform bill.

Actually, the people who are unhappy with it fall into one of two categories: those who have been lied to and those who are doing the lying. 

Let’s start with those who have been lied to. Sadly, there are a lot of low-information voters in the country.

While those of us who are conservative tend to say that they are on the liberal side of the political spectrum, the truth is that most Americans would fit that description, regardless of where their personal political views fall on the spectrum. The truth is that few Americans are interested in politics anymore, mostly because they feel their interest is futile and their vote doesn’t count.

That’s a pretty sad indictment on our nation’s political system, in and of itself. What started out as a government by the people and for the people has truly become a government by the ruling class and for the ruling class.

Considering that the intent of the Founding Fathers was that there would be no permanent ruling class in our nation, this just shows how far we’ve fallen from our roots.

How To Build a Small Bunker in Your Backyard with $400

So, what’s the lie that’s being propagated in this case? It’s actually nothing new. In fact, it’s the same lie that the Democrat Party has used for years, whenever they wanted to attack Republicans about taxes. That is, the tax reform benefits the rich, by penalizing the poor.

This is an outright lie. To make it work, they have to do some pretty tricky manipulations of the numbers, but as everyone knows, you don’t get anywhere in Washington without learning how to do that.

So what’s the manipulation? That the tax reform passed by Congress reduces taxes for the wealthy, without reducing it for the lower and middle class.

Technically, that statement is true. It is true because wealthy people will be paying less taxes, while the poor won’t. But in order to be true, it has to ignore a much deeper truth.

That is, the people whose federal income taxes aren’t being reduced aren’t paying any federal income taxes at all. What that means is that they’re complaining that the tax reform doesn’t give these people money.

Democrat talking points are following this manipulation and telling people that the tax reform is going to raise their tax rates, to benefit the rich. Since that’s the narrative being followed by the mainstream media, that’s what most people think.

In fact, only 15% of the population currently believe that their taxes are going to go down. That’s a pretty effective propaganda campaign, no matter how you look at it.

Of course, this is a lie and like any lie, it can only last so long. Pretty soon people are going to start seeing the truth, either through a bigger paycheck or through their tax returns. When people have more money in their pockets, it’s hard to keep telling them that the tax reform has hurt them.

The Unhappy Elite

Democrat lawmakers are unhappy with the tax reform because it benefits corporate America and the owners of those corporations. These politicians have been pushing the narrative of the “evil corporation” and the “evil one percent” for so long, that they believe it themselves. Since those people are evil, anything done which benefits them must be wrong.

We’ve got to remember that the Democrat Party’s major thrust, ever since Donald Trump won the presidential election, has been to RESIST. That has become their byword and they intend to follow it, even if it means that they have to hurt the very people they’ve sworn to represent. Those people will just have to understand that their political masters understand what’s best for them.

This is pure hypocrisy, especially considering that Democrats look to those same wealthy people to foot the bill for their political campaigns and lavish lifestyles. But apparently that’s not a contradiction in a liberal’s mind. I’m not sure how they work that out, but somehow or other they do.

But there’s a much more serious problem for Democrats, one which they don’t know how to deal with. That’s the long-term fallout from the tax reform.

A former Clinton advisor has come forth, stating that he’s unsure how the tax reform will shake out with millennials, a very important voting block for the Democrat Party. They could turn Republican en masse, in response to finding that they have more money in their pockets.

If this were to happen, it would be devastating to the Democrats in the mid-term elections. Not one Democrat in the House or Senate voted in favor of the tax cut, which means that they didn’t vote in favor of lowering our taxes.

That’s not going to play out well for most of their constituents.

Corporate America

Leaving politics aside for a moment, the true reaction to the tax reform bill isn’t what’s happening in Washington, but what’s happening in the rest of the country. The stock market is reacting very favorably, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and other key indicators reaching record highs. Corporate America is responding favorably to the tax reforms, which lower corporate taxes considerably.

One hope is that the exodus of American corporations which we’ve seen throughout the Obama years will come to an end. Even better would be to see some of those corporations who have left turn around and come back home. That’s really what the corporate tax cut is aimed at, a calculated gamble that could pay off big.

But even without that, we’re already seeing a positive reaction out of America’s corporations, with over 100 publically announcing across-the-board raises or bonuses due to the lower taxes. After years of wages remaining stagnant, these raises and bonuses will be seen as a real cause for rejoicing on the parts of many working Americans, especially those in lower-wage jobs.

Understanding the Economics of Tax Reductions

Tax rates and tax reform is all about government revenue. Basically any government sits on top of society, skimming off the economy. They don’t do anything that produces wealth, but they have to have that wealth in order to function. So they tax those who do produce in order to have money.

Conservatives understand that if you kill the goose that lays the golden eggs, you don’t get any more eggs. So in an ideal conservative world, the idea is to provide a healthy atmosphere for the geese. That way, you get more eggs. Reducing taxes and reducing regulations are the two key ways that governments are able to provide a healthy atmosphere for the corporate geese.

That’s why Republicans push for lower corporate taxes and lower taxes on the rich. Those corporations and people don’t put the money they save on taxes in their mattresses, they invest it in making more money. In the process, they hire more people and pay more taxes. So, even though the tax percentage is less, the actual tax revenue is higher.

This may very well be counter-intuitive, which is why liberals have so much trouble understanding it. But past economic history proves it out. When taxes are low, investment increases, creating more profits. That works out to a bigger tax base.

So, skimming a smaller percentage of a bigger tax base works out to be more profitable for the government. At the same time, it produces a more positive atmosphere, which helps encourage investing in the economy.

Liberals, on the other hand, don’t understand economics in anywhere near the same way. To start with, they ignore who the wealth producers are. In their minds, it is the government, not private industry, which produces both jobs and wealth. All that private industry does is provide them with money to operate on.

Because of that, in their worldview, companies that keep their profits are evil, because the elite in government service could obviously make better use of that money, helping their constituents. So, the only evil thing about those corporations is that they want to keep their profit and decide how that profit is spent. If it is spent on helping people through social projects, they want to get credit for it, not allow some politician to take credit for it.

But isn’t this Economically Dangerous?

With the huge debt our country currently has, it would seem that reducing taxes is a risky move to make. Without that tax revenue, how is the country going to continue paying its bills, let alone not racking up more debt?

That’s a very good question, and one that has been raised in many quarters. The fact is, there is some risk in this move. Historically however, reducing taxes, especially corporate taxes, boosts the economy. This results in more overall revenue for the government, even with the lower tax rate.

President Trump and the Republicans in Congress are counting on this. But that’s not all that Trump is counting on. Ever since taking office, he’s been aggressively seeking to cut the federal budget and the federal workforce. While Congress hasn’t fully cooperated with him on this, there is still time.

One of the ways that Trump is reducing federal spending is by an effective hiring freeze. This doesn’t hurt anyone, as there are no actual layoffs happening. Rather, the federal workforce is being reduced by attrition, as people quit or retire.

So the increase in employment that we are seeing under Trump’s presidency is happening in spite of the number of federal employees diminishing. This is in direct contrast to Obama’s presidency, where the federal workforce increased dramatically.

If Trump can succeed in lowering federal expenditures significantly, while increasing revenues, he will have accomplished something big enough to qualify him as one of the greatest presidents in our nation’s history.

The Hypocrisy Goes On

The biggest hypocrisy in this whole debate (a debate that’s still going on, even though the issue is settled and the law has been passed) is that Democrat controlled California and New York are scrambling to protect the wealthy in their states.

The one group who suffers the most under this new tax package are people who have to pay over $10,000 per year in state income taxes. Under the new plan, they are only allowed to deduct the first $10,000 of their state income taxes from their income on their federal income taxes. This increases the amount of federal income tax these people are paying slightly.

You would think that this would make Democrats happy, as they are constantly trumpeting how the “one percent doesn’t pay their fair share,” something that in and of itself is a lie. Yet, both New York and California are seeking means to protect their one percenters from the evils of tax reform.

Video first seen on Fox Business.

The only people affected by these protections are those whose incomes are well above average. In California, you have to be making $140,000 per year, in order to have to pay $10,000 in state income taxes. New York is even higher, with residents needing to make over $170,000 to reach that threshold.

So these measures clearly aren’t to protect the poor, or even to protect the middle class, the people who the Democrats are claiming are hurt by the tax reform.

California

In California, plans are hatching for a political shell game. The covering idea is that the maximum state income tax that anyone will be required to pay is $10,000, to match what the new law allows in deductions. The rest of the state income tax can be paid as a “charitable contribution” to the state’s Excellence Fund. The state would then issue a tax receipt for their “charitable contribution.”

If this isn’t outright illegal, it should be. There is no way that this can be called a charitable contribution, especially since it is mandatory, not voluntary. The shell company being created for this is literally nothing more than a tax dodge.

It is no different than someone setting up an offshore banking account to hide their income and avoid taxes.

New York

New York is seeking a different way of protecting their wealthy, by replacing state income taxes with a “payroll tax” paid by employers. This one should be interesting, as over $60 billion of the state’s revenue comes from income taxes.

So, where is that $60 billion plus going to come from? The businesses; somehow, they have to come up with that much money, rather than people paying their own income taxes. This could be seen as a boon to the individual, but apparently New York’s Governor is suggesting that businesses lower people’s salaries, on order to be able to pay the payroll taxes.

Once again, we have Democrats contradicting themselves. The same political party who is pushing for a $15 per hour minimum wage, is telling employers to lower wages. The only way I can read this is that they’re expecting employers to do is lower the wages of everyone but people who are making $15 per hour or lower. While this will hurt upper management (part of the evil one percent), the people it will hurt the most are the middle class.

Congratulations Democrats, you’ve done it again!

Speaking of the Middle Class

Perhaps one of the best parts of the tax reform is something that should make just about any middle-class family happy… the individual mandate from Obamacare has finally been repealed. Of all the onerous legal mumbo-jumbo that Obamacare included, this has been the most odious to most people.

What this means is that the legal requirement to have health insurance or pay an annual fine is finally coming to an end. This should thrill countless middle-class families, who can’t afford health insurance, but are being forced into buying it anyway or pay the fine. Personally, this is the best part of the new tax plan for me.

I live close to Mexico, so my wife and I go to Mexico for all my healthcare needs. While there may be a few things that they can’t do for us, by and large, I’ve found the healthcare that we’ve received in Mexico to be excellent. It’s also a lot cheaper. That’s why I go there. But for the last few years, I’ve had to pay a fine, just to have that right. Now I will no longer have it.

While the Republicans in Congress haven’t yet fulfilled their promise to repeal Obamacare, this is a major step in the right direction.

I’m glad to see it happening and I hope to soon see more.

This article has been written by Rich Murphy for Survivopedia.

References:

http://money.cnn.com/data/markets/dowtrans/

http://money.cnn.com/data/markets/dow/

 

Fighting Tax Reform. Is It Good Or Bad?

Click here to view the original post.

Probably the biggest legislative win for the American people in a long time was the tax reform bill recently passed by Congress and signed into law by President Trump.

This completes another one of Trump’s campaign promises, as well as the promise of many Republican lawmakers. Yet not everyone is happy with the tax reform bill.

Actually, the people who are unhappy with it fall into one of two categories: those who have been lied to and those who are doing the lying. 

Let’s start with those who have been lied to. Sadly, there are a lot of low-information voters in the country.

While those of us who are conservative tend to say that they are on the liberal side of the political spectrum, the truth is that most Americans would fit that description, regardless of where their personal political views fall on the spectrum. The truth is that few Americans are interested in politics anymore, mostly because they feel their interest is futile and their vote doesn’t count.

That’s a pretty sad indictment on our nation’s political system, in and of itself. What started out as a government by the people and for the people has truly become a government by the ruling class and for the ruling class.

Considering that the intent of the Founding Fathers was that there would be no permanent ruling class in our nation, this just shows how far we’ve fallen from our roots.

How To Build a Small Bunker in Your Backyard with $400

So, what’s the lie that’s being propagated in this case? It’s actually nothing new. In fact, it’s the same lie that the Democrat Party has used for years, whenever they wanted to attack Republicans about taxes. That is, the tax reform benefits the rich, by penalizing the poor.

This is an outright lie. To make it work, they have to do some pretty tricky manipulations of the numbers, but as everyone knows, you don’t get anywhere in Washington without learning how to do that.

So what’s the manipulation? That the tax reform passed by Congress reduces taxes for the wealthy, without reducing it for the lower and middle class.

Technically, that statement is true. It is true because wealthy people will be paying less taxes, while the poor won’t. But in order to be true, it has to ignore a much deeper truth.

That is, the people whose federal income taxes aren’t being reduced aren’t paying any federal income taxes at all. What that means is that they’re complaining that the tax reform doesn’t give these people money.

Democrat talking points are following this manipulation and telling people that the tax reform is going to raise their tax rates, to benefit the rich. Since that’s the narrative being followed by the mainstream media, that’s what most people think.

In fact, only 15% of the population currently believe that their taxes are going to go down. That’s a pretty effective propaganda campaign, no matter how you look at it.

Of course, this is a lie and like any lie, it can only last so long. Pretty soon people are going to start seeing the truth, either through a bigger paycheck or through their tax returns. When people have more money in their pockets, it’s hard to keep telling them that the tax reform has hurt them.

The Unhappy Elite

Democrat lawmakers are unhappy with the tax reform because it benefits corporate America and the owners of those corporations. These politicians have been pushing the narrative of the “evil corporation” and the “evil one percent” for so long, that they believe it themselves. Since those people are evil, anything done which benefits them must be wrong.

We’ve got to remember that the Democrat Party’s major thrust, ever since Donald Trump won the presidential election, has been to RESIST. That has become their byword and they intend to follow it, even if it means that they have to hurt the very people they’ve sworn to represent. Those people will just have to understand that their political masters understand what’s best for them.

This is pure hypocrisy, especially considering that Democrats look to those same wealthy people to foot the bill for their political campaigns and lavish lifestyles. But apparently that’s not a contradiction in a liberal’s mind. I’m not sure how they work that out, but somehow or other they do.

But there’s a much more serious problem for Democrats, one which they don’t know how to deal with. That’s the long-term fallout from the tax reform.

A former Clinton advisor has come forth, stating that he’s unsure how the tax reform will shake out with millennials, a very important voting block for the Democrat Party. They could turn Republican en masse, in response to finding that they have more money in their pockets.

If this were to happen, it would be devastating to the Democrats in the mid-term elections. Not one Democrat in the House or Senate voted in favor of the tax cut, which means that they didn’t vote in favor of lowering our taxes.

That’s not going to play out well for most of their constituents.

Corporate America

Leaving politics aside for a moment, the true reaction to the tax reform bill isn’t what’s happening in Washington, but what’s happening in the rest of the country. The stock market is reacting very favorably, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and other key indicators reaching record highs. Corporate America is responding favorably to the tax reforms, which lower corporate taxes considerably.

One hope is that the exodus of American corporations which we’ve seen throughout the Obama years will come to an end. Even better would be to see some of those corporations who have left turn around and come back home. That’s really what the corporate tax cut is aimed at, a calculated gamble that could pay off big.

But even without that, we’re already seeing a positive reaction out of America’s corporations, with over 100 publically announcing across-the-board raises or bonuses due to the lower taxes. After years of wages remaining stagnant, these raises and bonuses will be seen as a real cause for rejoicing on the parts of many working Americans, especially those in lower-wage jobs.

Understanding the Economics of Tax Reductions

Tax rates and tax reform is all about government revenue. Basically any government sits on top of society, skimming off the economy. They don’t do anything that produces wealth, but they have to have that wealth in order to function. So they tax those who do produce in order to have money.

Conservatives understand that if you kill the goose that lays the golden eggs, you don’t get any more eggs. So in an ideal conservative world, the idea is to provide a healthy atmosphere for the geese. That way, you get more eggs. Reducing taxes and reducing regulations are the two key ways that governments are able to provide a healthy atmosphere for the corporate geese.

That’s why Republicans push for lower corporate taxes and lower taxes on the rich. Those corporations and people don’t put the money they save on taxes in their mattresses, they invest it in making more money. In the process, they hire more people and pay more taxes. So, even though the tax percentage is less, the actual tax revenue is higher.

This may very well be counter-intuitive, which is why liberals have so much trouble understanding it. But past economic history proves it out. When taxes are low, investment increases, creating more profits. That works out to a bigger tax base.

So, skimming a smaller percentage of a bigger tax base works out to be more profitable for the government. At the same time, it produces a more positive atmosphere, which helps encourage investing in the economy.

Liberals, on the other hand, don’t understand economics in anywhere near the same way. To start with, they ignore who the wealth producers are. In their minds, it is the government, not private industry, which produces both jobs and wealth. All that private industry does is provide them with money to operate on.

Because of that, in their worldview, companies that keep their profits are evil, because the elite in government service could obviously make better use of that money, helping their constituents. So, the only evil thing about those corporations is that they want to keep their profit and decide how that profit is spent. If it is spent on helping people through social projects, they want to get credit for it, not allow some politician to take credit for it.

But isn’t this Economically Dangerous?

With the huge debt our country currently has, it would seem that reducing taxes is a risky move to make. Without that tax revenue, how is the country going to continue paying its bills, let alone not racking up more debt?

That’s a very good question, and one that has been raised in many quarters. The fact is, there is some risk in this move. Historically however, reducing taxes, especially corporate taxes, boosts the economy. This results in more overall revenue for the government, even with the lower tax rate.

President Trump and the Republicans in Congress are counting on this. But that’s not all that Trump is counting on. Ever since taking office, he’s been aggressively seeking to cut the federal budget and the federal workforce. While Congress hasn’t fully cooperated with him on this, there is still time.

One of the ways that Trump is reducing federal spending is by an effective hiring freeze. This doesn’t hurt anyone, as there are no actual layoffs happening. Rather, the federal workforce is being reduced by attrition, as people quit or retire.

So the increase in employment that we are seeing under Trump’s presidency is happening in spite of the number of federal employees diminishing. This is in direct contrast to Obama’s presidency, where the federal workforce increased dramatically.

If Trump can succeed in lowering federal expenditures significantly, while increasing revenues, he will have accomplished something big enough to qualify him as one of the greatest presidents in our nation’s history.

The Hypocrisy Goes On

The biggest hypocrisy in this whole debate (a debate that’s still going on, even though the issue is settled and the law has been passed) is that Democrat controlled California and New York are scrambling to protect the wealthy in their states.

The one group who suffers the most under this new tax package are people who have to pay over $10,000 per year in state income taxes. Under the new plan, they are only allowed to deduct the first $10,000 of their state income taxes from their income on their federal income taxes. This increases the amount of federal income tax these people are paying slightly.

You would think that this would make Democrats happy, as they are constantly trumpeting how the “one percent doesn’t pay their fair share,” something that in and of itself is a lie. Yet, both New York and California are seeking means to protect their one percenters from the evils of tax reform.

Video first seen on Fox Business.

The only people affected by these protections are those whose incomes are well above average. In California, you have to be making $140,000 per year, in order to have to pay $10,000 in state income taxes. New York is even higher, with residents needing to make over $170,000 to reach that threshold.

So these measures clearly aren’t to protect the poor, or even to protect the middle class, the people who the Democrats are claiming are hurt by the tax reform.

California

In California, plans are hatching for a political shell game. The covering idea is that the maximum state income tax that anyone will be required to pay is $10,000, to match what the new law allows in deductions. The rest of the state income tax can be paid as a “charitable contribution” to the state’s Excellence Fund. The state would then issue a tax receipt for their “charitable contribution.”

If this isn’t outright illegal, it should be. There is no way that this can be called a charitable contribution, especially since it is mandatory, not voluntary. The shell company being created for this is literally nothing more than a tax dodge.

It is no different than someone setting up an offshore banking account to hide their income and avoid taxes.

New York

New York is seeking a different way of protecting their wealthy, by replacing state income taxes with a “payroll tax” paid by employers. This one should be interesting, as over $60 billion of the state’s revenue comes from income taxes.

So, where is that $60 billion plus going to come from? The businesses; somehow, they have to come up with that much money, rather than people paying their own income taxes. This could be seen as a boon to the individual, but apparently New York’s Governor is suggesting that businesses lower people’s salaries, on order to be able to pay the payroll taxes.

Once again, we have Democrats contradicting themselves. The same political party who is pushing for a $15 per hour minimum wage, is telling employers to lower wages. The only way I can read this is that they’re expecting employers to do is lower the wages of everyone but people who are making $15 per hour or lower. While this will hurt upper management (part of the evil one percent), the people it will hurt the most are the middle class.

Congratulations Democrats, you’ve done it again!

Speaking of the Middle Class

Perhaps one of the best parts of the tax reform is something that should make just about any middle-class family happy… the individual mandate from Obamacare has finally been repealed. Of all the onerous legal mumbo-jumbo that Obamacare included, this has been the most odious to most people.

What this means is that the legal requirement to have health insurance or pay an annual fine is finally coming to an end. This should thrill countless middle-class families, who can’t afford health insurance, but are being forced into buying it anyway or pay the fine. Personally, this is the best part of the new tax plan for me.

I live close to Mexico, so my wife and I go to Mexico for all my healthcare needs. While there may be a few things that they can’t do for us, by and large, I’ve found the healthcare that we’ve received in Mexico to be excellent. It’s also a lot cheaper. That’s why I go there. But for the last few years, I’ve had to pay a fine, just to have that right. Now I will no longer have it.

While the Republicans in Congress haven’t yet fulfilled their promise to repeal Obamacare, this is a major step in the right direction.

I’m glad to see it happening and I hope to soon see more.

This article has been written by Rich Murphy for Survivopedia.

References:

http://money.cnn.com/data/markets/dowtrans/

http://money.cnn.com/data/markets/dow/

 

Out With The Old And In With The New

Click here to view the original post.

A few days ago we celebrated the ending of 2017 and the beginning of 2018.

It is a time when some people look back over the old year and try to take stock, while others look forward and try to see just what the new year might bring. Some make resolutions, while others scoff, knowing that the vast majority of those resolutions won’t last more than two weeks.

At this time last year, many of us were looking forward to a change in the presidency. The Donald had won the election, beating out Hillary Clinton for the right to reside at 1600 Pennsylvania AVE NW, in Washington, DC. Democrats were outraged about that, vowing to topple Trump from that pinnacle of power.

But those of us who are not on the extreme left breathed a huge collective sigh of relief to see the end of Obama’s reign of terror come to an end.

I think even the “never Trump” faction of the Republican Party might have breathed at least a small sigh of relief to know that Hillary Clinton wouldn’t become the new Commander in Chief. But on the other hand, there were never Trumpers scattered around amongst the Republicans who would have rather had her in the Oval Office, just to keep Trump out.

Trump didn’t fit in, everyone knew that. He himself made a point of it. Worse, from the Washington establishment point of view, was his campaign promise to “drain the swamp;” something that the swamp itself has fought hard against.

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No matter how you look at it, Donald Trump’s presidency has been one of the most active and controversial presidencies this country has ever seen. Those who look at Washington politics honestly (of which there are very few) have to admit that Trump has made a huge amount of changes to his predecessor’s policies. For those who are extreme liberals, this has been horrifying; but for those who are conservatives, it has been like a breath of fresh air.

Trump’s handling of Christmas itself gives a very clear picture of the difference between his presidency and Obama’s. From his actions, it appeared that Obama despised Christmas, at least as a religious holiday, even though he claimed to be a Christian. The liberal Greeting of Happy Holidays, supposedly intended to be all-inclusive, ignored what Christmas is really all about.

For Trump, this was just one more thing to distinguish him from the previous president and those hanging on to his coat tails.

Last year he said that he was going to bring the message of “Merry Christmas” back to this country… and he did. Defying the political correctness police (who he mostly ignores), Trump declared a Merry Christmas to the nation and the world, reminding us of the real reason for the season.

Video first seen on Fox Business.

One thing that Trump has going for him, which few people recognize is his great character, and true character is standing for something. We used to define being a man as standing for something. Trump does.

Giving credit where credit is due, so did Obama. The big difference is that Obama was praised by the media lackeys for saying what they wanted to hear, while Trump is lambasted at every turn for saying what he believes in.

It takes much more moral fiber to say what you believe, when you know you’re going to be crucified in the press for it, than it takes when you know you’re going to be praised for it.

That’s much of the problem that exists within the Republican Party. They aren’t willing to take the heat for doing what is right. Therefore, they bow down to the wishes of the Democrats, even while the Democrats are in the minority. They have allowed themselves to be whipped by the collective pens of the media.

In this, they haven’t learned the lessons of the 2016 Presidential Election; a lesson that has continued throughout Trump’s first year in power. That lesson, of ignoring the media and playing to the American people is one that could change this country for the good. It would eliminate the disproportionate power that the minority holds over the majority. Quite literally, the power of name-calling.

But doesn’t the free press exist to keep the government in check? Yes. But they’ve long ago abdicated their role in the American political system, setting aside their objectivity as a government watchdog and becoming nothing more than the propaganda arm of the progressive-liberal left.

One could say that ignoring the media puts one in an echo chamber. At one time, this was true. When the media did their Constitutionally protected job it sure was. Back then, the media expressed the opinion of We the People, not just the opinion of the liberals living in the coastal enclaves. That has made them into part of one echo chamber, as they have studiously ignored any others.

Obama clearly lived within that same echo chamber, hearing the adulation of the media on a constant basis. He was a rock star president, who accepted their adoration as his due. He also used that as his justification for his actions, telling himself that if the media was with him, he must be right.

But the media is one of the two most progressive groups of people in the United States, the other being Hollywood. Interestingly enough, the two groups who spend their lives in make-believe are the ones who are defining progressive-liberalism in our country today. And those in the Democrat Party are working overtime to live up to their expectations.

Trump’s First Year in the Office

Is Trump living in an echo chamber as well? I would have to say yes and no. The no part is that he hears what his enemies say about him. This is made clear by his constant war with the mainstream media. Were he not hearing what those who oppose him say, this war quite literally wouldn’t exist. So it seems clear that unlike his predecessor, he doesn’t just turn off the news channels he doesn’t like.

On the yes side of that answer, Trump’s advisors are obviously people who believe as he does, just as any president’s are. His tweets on Twitter are focused on reaching his support base, who he also listens to. So yes, I would have to say that he is paying more attention to what those on his side of the political aisle say, than he is to what those on the other side of the aisle say.

But there are some major differences between this and Obama. First of all, regardless of what the progressive-liberals say about them being the majority, that’s only true in the coastal enclaves. Since they ignore any part of the country that doesn’t overwhelmingly support them, it’s no wonder they think they are the majority.

But those of us in what they refer to as “flyover country” make up the majority of this country. So when Trump listens to his support base, he is listening to a much larger group than Obama ever did.

Then there’s the huge variety of opinions even within the Republican Party itself. While Trump is president and therefore the leader of his party, he has to constantly contend with dissention in the ranks, something that Democrat presidents don’t have to worry so much about. Democrats are much better at marching in lockstep than Republicans are; something that is amazingly clear every time Congress takes a vote.

Trump has listened to the American people and his agenda is based upon what he has heard. Has he heard perfectly? I doubt it. But at least he has tried. That’s something so rare in Washington as to be unable for the majority of the swamp to grasp.

The American people were concerned about jobs, so Trump has been working hard to give us jobs. A number of his actions as president were directly pointed at creating American jobs.

From signing the Keystone Pipeline authorization, through his bullying of major corporations who were planning on moving jobs overseas, to the tax cut bill that just passed through Congress, Trump has worked since the election (before taking office) to create an environment conducive to gainful employment for every working-age American.

Trump’s second major area of accomplishment in this first year was to make a start on dismantling government control of our lives. If there is anything for which he has received opposition by the Republican Party, this is it.

Rather than support his work, Republicans in Congress have opposed it. This has been nowhere more clear than in their opposition to Trump’s proposed budget, where he has tried to cut out unnecessary spending, especially for government programs and agencies which have outlived their enabling legislation.

But even with these setbacks, Trump’s administration has done an amazing job of eliminating regulations, especially those which were put into place during Obama’s lame duck closing of his presidency. The rollback of these regulations has saved American citizens billions of dollars in taxes, something that has been largely overlooked.

Some have complained that Trump appointed Cabinet Secretaries who hated the organizations they were chosen to lead. If you want to increase Washington’s swollen bureaucracy, that’s the wrong action to take. But if you want to reduce the size of the swamp, eliminating unnecessary government waste, it’s a brilliant strategy. If Trump is going to succeed in draining the swamp, this is one major weapon he has in that battle.

Yes, the swamp won’t like being drained. Trump has and will continue to receive a lot of push-back from Washington bureaucrats. These people like their cushy government jobs, with high pay, lots of benefits and job security that the rest of us can only dream about. Being mostly Democrats, they also hate to see Trump in office.

That’s why there have been so many leaks of sensitive information since Trump was sworn into office. These people are endangering the country, on behalf of their ideology. Sadly, they think that they are serving some higher moral good, when in reality all they are doing is serving themselves and their political party.

The “big things” that Trump has done, like appointing Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court are the ones which have garnered all the attention. But in reality, those aren’t the ones which should have. Yes, appointing Gorsuch to the Supreme Court was important, as it keeps the highest court in the land, an organization that is supposed to be non-political, politically balanced.

What Comes Next

Other than that, Trump’s actions which will make the greatest difference over the next few decades are and will be those which fundamentally change the government, for the benefit of the American people.

The recent tax cut is one of those; one that has been long overdue. Eliminating regulations is another, one that we can expect to see continue throughout the next few years. But the biggest single gift that Donald Trump can possibly give the American people will be that of truly draining the swamp… if he can.

I highly suspect that this battle will be the big news of the next year. But it is one that we will hear very little about. It’s not flashy or exciting, so the media (both liberal and conservative) won’t pay it much attention. It is the war going on in the background; but it is an important war, nonetheless.

Will Trump win? At this point, that’s anybody’s guess. But if I were a betting man, I’d put my money on The Donald. He has already shown an amazing level of tenacity and an incredibly tough hide; both important characteristics in this war.

This will probably be a war of attrition, with each victory bringing the President one step closer to ultimate victory. So the real question is, how long with those bureaucrats in the Executive Branch, the ones referred to as the “Deep State,” continue breaking the law in an effort to get rid of Trump?

They are the ones who need to be gotten rid of, in some cases, accompanied by a lengthy stay in prison for their crimes. Probably the only reason they aren’t looking at that right now is that the FBI is too closely connected to the swamp.

Trump needs them on his side; and it doesn’t appear like he has them just yet. Maybe soon.This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia. 

What To Expect In 2018?

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Once again, another year is drawing to an end; 2018 is soon to be gone and we will be living in 2019. To many, the start of any new year is a time of hope, a chance for opportunity, a time for making New Year’s resolutions.

It’s also a time to look back on where we’ve come from, as well as looking forward to try and see what the New Year will bring.

Of course, it’s easier to look back at where we’ve come from, than it is to look forward and see what’s coming. Last I checked, I wasn’t issued a crystal ball.

That doesn’t really matter though, as I wouldn’t have the foggiest idea of how to use it. Nevertheless, as preppers, we’re always trying to look forward and figure out what could be coming down the road.

Many of the things that people prepare for never come to pass. I still remember the panic over Y2K, which turned out to be nothing. But the fact is, it could have been something major. The whole idea of preparing for it was that we didn’t know what was going to happen, so we had to be ready.

There are always those who will make fun of those of us who try to prepare for coming disasters. In their minds, every disaster that doesn’t come to pass is just one more proof that we don’t know what we’re doing.

But those of us who really watch what’s going on in the world take a close look at those missed disasters, as well as the ones which do happen, seeking to learn what lessons we can from them.

Statistically speaking, it’s almost a sure probability that we will eventually be hit by a major disaster. The chances of being hit by a regional disaster are even greater, as are those of a personal or family disaster.

So you and I aren’t wasting our time by preparing; we’re the ones who will survive, when others are struggling. That’s why we do it and that’s all the reason we need.

So, the question that faces us now is what is the new year going to bring out way? What sorts of things are we likely to see coming our way over the next twelve months?

War in Washington

Donald Trump has had a good year as president, since his inauguration on January 20th. Of any president this great nation has had, he has done the most to fulfill his campaign promises. While there is still much to be done, especially in draining the swamp, the President enters his second year in office, standing on a solid foundation of accomplishment.

Trump’s success hasn’t been without a price though. He has been besieged on every side, between Democrat members of congress and progressive-liberal bureaucrats in the swamp, through members of his own political party, to the left-leaning media. The President’s enemies are legion and he is embroiled in a war of survival with them.

I can’t say that the President has won any of his wars yet, but neither has he lost any of them. More and more it is looking like he is going to come out on top, with the progressive-liberal minority being shown for what they are; especially that of being a clear minority here in the USA.

The Democrat Party is largely demoralized, at last as badly as they were when Hillary lost the election. Their entire year has been wasted on trying to find a way of tipping over the apple cart and unseating the President. Yet they have been unsuccessful, even with using every dirty trick they can find.

I expect to see Donald Trump gain more and more political capital, as he continues to come through for the American people. This will further serve to marginalize the Democrats, who don’t have a platform right now, other than that of hating the sitting President.

There is little chance of a Democrat win in the mid-term elections, unless they manage to get their act together and come up with something to stand for, rather than just standing against things that they hate.

But Trump’s biggest enemy is the Republican Party, especially the RINOs within the party. Many of the things he wants to do require Congress passing legislation, but he can’t yet count on their support. Of all the wars he’s fighting, that’s the most important one for him to win.

Increased Social Unrest

The mutual hissy fit that the Democrat Party has been having for the last few years, and especially since Trump won the elections, has manifest itself in a variety of far-left “activist” groups.

We all know of the violence perpetrated by Black Lives Matter and Antifa, during what were supposed to be “peaceful” demonstrations. Yet in many cities, their violence is being ignored and even allowed.

There are now some small white supremacist groups that are rising up against these far-left activist groups. So far, there have only been a few clashes between the two groups, but we can expect that to rise. It seems that there are those in both groups who want that violence and are seeking ways of bringing it to pass.

The recent confrontation in Milwaukee shows a new way that government officials are reacting to this violence. Rather than stepping in and breaking it up, police were ordered to allow it to continue, only stepping in if others were in danger from the violence. This can only serve to encourage more violence of this type, something we can expect to see in the coming months.

There are still those on both sides which are pushing for a racial civil war. While I don’t think a nationwide war will break out, I would not be surprised at all to see local warfare, especially in the big cities.

This might either manifest as a few large battles, or a prolonged crime spree of the type that was going on in Northern Ireland for so many years. In either case, the people who will pay the biggest price won’t be those who are perpetuating the violence, but rather the innocent people who become their victims.

North Korea

The situation with North Korea has been deteriorating rapidly throughout the last year. At the same time, the North Koreans have had a year of technological breakthroughs, bringing them to the brink of becoming a serious nuclear power.

All that power in the hands of Kim Jong-un is extremely dangerous. He, like his father and grandfather before him, has been publicly declaring his intent to attack the United States with those nuclear arms. The big difference between him and his ancestors, is that he now has the capability of following through on those threats.

Every day that North Korea delays their attack puts them in greater danger of a preemptive attack by US military forces. For that reason, I can’t see Pyongyang waiting one day longer than absolutely necessary to attack.

As best as I can read the situation, as soon as they have the wherewithal to attack the United States and be assured of accomplishing their goals, they will.

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The only real question is whether they will opt for a conventional nuclear attack or a nuclear-triggered EMP attack. Of the two, the EMP would actually be the more serious attack, surpassing a conventional nuclear attack in total death and destruction, even though there would be no obvious destruction from the nuclear blast, other than the immediate loss of electrical power and every electrical device that we use suddenly coming to a stop.

I seriously doubt that we will make it through 2018 without this attack happening, unless our government decides on doing a preemptive disarming strike against North Korea. As I have written previously, that would be extremely difficult to accomplish, as North Korea’s nuclear arms are dispersed, mounted on mobile launchers.

More & Bigger Mass Killings

The scourge of mass killings seems to have no end. While former President Obama’s claims that only we here in the United States are subject to such atrocities was totally incorrect, we definitely have our share of them.

Thanks to massive news coverage giving fame and glory to the killers, we can expect to continue seeing these mentally imbalanced people make their spectacular exits from this life.

Sadly, the problem is not being addressed directly. Democrats persist in blaming guns for the killings, totally ignoring the mental problems of the killers themselves.

Republicans aren’t doing much better. While they are recognizing the killers as being the problem and not the guns, they have yet to make a proposal to deal with the underlying mental issues of these murderers.

As long as things continue like this, I think we can expect to see mass killings happening. Each killer is going to be trying to outdo the last, planning their crimes to provide the highest possible death tolls.

As the Las Vegas killing showed us, even being armed for self-defense isn’t a sure protection from these people.

A Rise in Terrorism

Iraq has announced that ISIS has been defeated. That’s both good news and bad. The good part is that they are no longer murdering innocent people over there in the Middle East. The bad news is that there are still lots of ISIS operatives around, as well as terrorists from other radicalized Islamic groups.

My concern here is that ISIS is going to put more and more effort into terrorism, in order to retain their relevancy in the world. Up till now, most of their acts have been overseas, but there is a very real concern that they will put more effort into violent acts here in the US, either by importing terrorists or motivating home-grown terrorists to act.

We’ve already seen both of these happen this year, with ISIS having taken credit for a number of violent acts that have happened within our borders. We’ve also seen efforts on their part to infiltrate “soldiers” into the United States. One group of 10 was captured in McAllen, Texas, which tells us that there are many more who have made it through safely. An ISIS spokesman has claimed that there are more than 100 within our borders right now, which means that there may very well be many more.

With international terrorism already on the upswing, thanks to the Syrian refugee situation and the various radicalized Islamic terrorist groups, any efforts by ISIS will be most unwelcome. Yet there is little we can do to stop these actions, other than to be alert and armed to defend ourselves.

More Liberal Preppers

Ever since President Trump’s inauguration, liberals fear mongers have been claiming a coming apocalypse. In a way, this is somewhat humorous, as we had the same thing happening in the other direction, while Obama was in office.

Some of the same results are coming out of the fear mongering as well, with more and more liberals turning to prepping.

This gives those of us who are conservatives an excellent opportunity to reach out the hand of friendship to these newbie preppers and give them a hand. Who knows, some friendly advice now, as they are beginning to get into prepping, might be the trigger that gets them to stop listening to what the news media and the progressive-liberal politicians say about us and they might discover for themselves that we are decent people.

That could even lead to them adopting some of our views on things.

I realize that’s a bit of a stretch, but the progressive-liberal left has to keep people ignorant, in order to get them to keep buying their agenda. Becoming a prepper belies the idea of staying ignorant.

Once their minds are open to learning how to prepare, they may actually start listening to why we prepare, rather than just accepting the standard issue liberal talking points.

One thing is certain, there’s nothing to be lost and much to be gained, by bringing our liberal cousins into the prepping movement and helping them become self-sufficient.

If nothing else, each one is one less liberal that will be trying to redistribute our stockpiles, when a disaster happens.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Survival Skills To Learn From Prehistoric People

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I’ve got some news for you; prepping isn’t something new. In fact, prepping has existed ever since mankind crawled out of the trees and became hunter-gatherers, sometime back in prehistoric times.

Humans couldn’t have survived the winter in colder climates, if they hadn’t learned how to become preppers. They would have starved to death.

What makes prepping seem like something new is that since the start of the industrial revolution, we have moved farther and farther away from a survival mentality, and have instead adopted a luxury-based mentality.

The average person in western culture doesn’t think about what they need to have in order to survive, because those things are all readily available, as long as one has money to buy them.

But for most of human history, the economic base for society wasn’t industry, it was agriculture. Everyone needed to eat; and before the industrial revolution created the farm equipment of today, the vast majority of people were employed in agriculture, making sure that we could all eat.

This meant taking advantage of the growing season, so that there would be enough food to make it through the annual “disaster,” called winter. If your farm was successful and you had a good harvest, you could eat. If not, you’d better find another source of food; maybe your neighbor had better luck than you did.

Obviously, these farmers and the hunter-gatherers before them survived, or you and I wouldn’t be here today. So I’d say they must have known a thing or two about survival.

The question for us, is what did they know, which we could learn from them?

Teaching Your Children

The early survival lessons were hard learned. The school of hard knocks is a really tough task-master, with an extremely steep grading curve. You either learned, or you died. Survival was nothing more than a passing grade.

With lessons being so costly to learn, you can be sure that parents taught their children everything they knew. Fathers taught their sons and mothers taught their daughters in the only way they could, making their children work side-by-side with them, as they did the things they needed to do to survive. Failure to do so was costly, as the children would probably not survive.

This included a wide range of skills. They couldn’t just go to the store for things they needed and commerce probably hadn’t even reached the point of a stable barter system.

Basically, if you needed something, you had to make it yourself; so you’d better know how. That meant you’d better teach your children as well.

Hunting and Tracking

I’m not sure how it is in the rest of the country, but where I live, hunting consists of hiding in a blind and baiting deer (and other animals) into killing range with feed corn.

That’s not the way I learned to hunt as a child and I’m sure it’s not the way that our prehistoric ancestors hunted. For them, hunting meant tracking animals to find them and killing them with primitive weapons.

If the average hunter today was forced to track their game, they would probably starve to death. Most can’t even identify animal tracks and sign, let alone knowing how old they are or what other messages those tracks might be sending.

In addition to tracking animals, our prehistoric ancestors learned their habits. They didn’t have to follow game around for days, as they knew how to find where they slept, where they ate and where they went for water.

So they could stake out those areas, awaiting the arrival of their prey, a much more efficient way to hunt.

Making Weapons

Those prehistoric hunters had to make their own weapons as well. There are three weapons which have been passed through the ages; the knife, the spear and the bow.

While they have all gone through numerous design changes through the years, we find all three of these still in use today. That speaks volumes about their effectiveness.

Making weapons is an art, especially making them from natural materials, using only primitive tools to work with.

Being able to shape a bow out of a tree branch, with nothing more to work with than a stone knife and other rocks, can’t be easy.

Yet these hunters did just that, along with knapping arrowheads, spear points and knives.

While it is hard to imagine society falling to the point where the ability to make our own weapons, for both hunting and defense, is essential for survival; the possibility does exist.

An even greater possibility exists for having to make such weapons if we are suddenly thrust into a wilderness survival situation. Should that happen, our ability to make these weapons could very well spell the difference between life and death.

Finding Natural Shelter

I seriously doubt that mankind started out building houses, even the primitive sorts of houses made by indigenous tribes. Rather, what little evidence exists, shows that our earliest ancestors lived in caves, something they probably learned from wild animals.

Caves are actually excellent natural shelters, providing the essentials of protection from rain and wind, as well as doing a fairly good job of holding in heat.

Some prehistoric people groups, such as the Indians who populated Mesa Verde, improved upon their natural caves by using stones to make rooms, dividing large caves into private habitations for multiple families.

The idea of building homes came from these people migrating to areas where there were no natural caves to live in. So they were forced to use whatever materials were at hand to build an artificial cave. I imagine those first houses were rather primitive by today’s standards, but they did the job, protecting their owners from the elements.

Sadly, we don’t have any examples of what they looked like, so that we could learn their technique. But I would venture to guess, they were simply more primitive or rustic versions of the native houses we have seen.

Making Clothing from Animal Skins

According to the Book of Genesis, the first clothing was made by sewing fig leaves together. While that may have covered their bodies, I’m sure it didn’t wear well. God solved that problem for Adam and Eve by killing animals and making them clothes out of the animal’s skins.

One of the many ways that mankind is unique is our need for clothing. No other species on the face of the Earth needs to wear clothes; those that need it, have fur to keep them warm. But even the hairiest of humans doesn’t have enough hair to do much for retaining warmth.

Using the skins of animals that they had hunted is a logical solution to the problem of clothing. After all, those pelts kept the animals warm, so therefore, they should work to keep people warm as well. The amazing thing is that prehistoric man figured out how to tan leather, so that those skins would last and then figured out how to sew it together to make clothes.

But rare is the hunter today that has any idea of how to tan their own hides, making it into useful leather or pelts. Rather, we send it off to commercial operations which do that for us. If we were ever caught in a long-term survival situation, knowing how tan hides would be an extremely useful skill.

Edible Wild Plants

As preppers, it seems that we focus more on the hunter side of being hunter-gatherers. I personally don’t have an issue with this, since I’m a definite carnivore. But in a survival situation, knowing what plants are safe to eat is a real boon to the diet.

I’ve been at this survival stuff for a long time, over 40 years. But I am still weak on edible plant recognition. It’s not that I haven’t studied it, it’s that I don’t use that knowledge. So, I end up losing it and need to study it again.

If we aren’t eating the edible plants that nature provides, there is no way that we are going to retain that knowledge for a very long.

The Value of Medicinal Plants

Speaking of plants, early medicine was all herbal medicine. There wasn’t a pharmaceutical industry. Doctors, by whatever name, learned what plants could be used for treating various ailments and how to use them. This information was closely guarded and passed on to an apprentice by word of mouth.

Those early doctors had to gather their own plants and make their own medicines, which consisted mostly of poultices and teas. While I’m sure there are many things they couldn’t treat, they obviously had some success, because their knowledge developed into the modern Medical Industry.

Even today, there are people who are experts in natural medicine, deriving medicines from plants. But these people are largely ignored in modern society, mostly because doctors use products produced by pharmaceutical houses.

But that doesn’t negate the value of natural medicine, as many of the medicines we use today have their roots in those natural medicines. All the pharmaceutical companies do is find artificial ways of creating things that nature provides to us.

If a serious enough of a disaster were to occur, such as an EMP, pharmaceuticals would run out quickly, leaving us without any medicines, other than natural medicines. Having the knowledge of what plants can be used for medicines and how to use them would be an incredibly useful skill in such a situation.

Situational Awareness

I think the American Indians (who qualify as a prehistoric people because they don’t have a written history) and other warlike tribal peoples invented the whole idea of situational awareness. Life was dangerous for these people, full of not only dangers from nature, but from other tribes as well.

The ability to recognize danger, before it manifests is a critical skill; one that is truly lacking in the world today. The world around us, especially the animal kingdom, is sending us constant messages of reassurance or danger, yet we don’t recognize them. We merely hear the birds chirping and think how nice it sounds, not that it might actually mean something.

The Value of Community

Early man was tribal, with the village being the tribe. This was even true of migratory people who followed the animals they hunted. Banding together helped them in the hunt, in defense and in sharing other common tasks. Ultimately, this made survival easier for them and led to the establishment of cities and society.

This is probably another skill that prehistoric man learned from watching animals. Many species of animals live in groups or herds. Predators found it easier to hunt together in packs and their prey found it easier to survive by staying together and presenting a united front. While some always died, the herd itself survived, which was the important part.

As mankind banded together, individuals began to specialize in specific tasks, putting their energies into performing those tasks and becoming more adept at them. This led to the beginning of the barter system, where these skilled artisans would trade their handwork for other things they needed.

Specialization was an important stepping stone in the development of society, as it increased the efficiency of individuals’ work, while at the same time providing a platform for improvement and innovation. Those who specialized in making certain handicrafts developed the skills and interest necessary to find ways of improving their products.

Through this, new features improved the traditional weapons and tools that primitive man used. Over the course of time, this actually led to the industrial revolution.

Waste Not

Primitive man didn’t waste anything. We see this best, through examining the culture of the American Indians. They used every part of the animals the killed, letting nothing go to waste. Internal organs, which were not eaten, were often made into containers, sinew was turned into bow strings, bone became tools and weapon handles, and skins turned into clothing and housing.

You never found a waste dump located next to an Indian village. That’s because there wasn’t any garbage to throw away. Rather, they made use of pretty much everything in one way or another.

Should we find ourselves in a survival situation, we would need to do the same!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Survival Skills To Learn From Prehistoric People

I’ve got some news for you; prepping isn’t something new. In fact, prepping has existed ever since mankind crawled out of the trees and became hunter-gatherers, sometime back in prehistoric times.

Humans couldn’t have survived the winter in colder climates, if they hadn’t learned how to become preppers. They would have starved to death.

What makes prepping seem like something new is that since the start of the industrial revolution, we have moved farther and farther away from a survival mentality, and have instead adopted a luxury-based mentality.

The average person in western culture doesn’t think about what they need to have in order to survive, because those things are all readily available, as long as one has money to buy them.

But for most of human history, the economic base for society wasn’t industry, it was agriculture. Everyone needed to eat; and before the industrial revolution created the farm equipment of today, the vast majority of people were employed in agriculture, making sure that we could all eat.

This meant taking advantage of the growing season, so that there would be enough food to make it through the annual “disaster,” called winter. If your farm was successful and you had a good harvest, you could eat. If not, you’d better find another source of food; maybe your neighbor had better luck than you did.

Obviously, these farmers and the hunter-gatherers before them survived, or you and I wouldn’t be here today. So I’d say they must have known a thing or two about survival.

The question for us, is what did they know, which we could learn from them?

Teaching Your Children

The early survival lessons were hard learned. The school of hard knocks is a really tough task-master, with an extremely steep grading curve. You either learned, or you died. Survival was nothing more than a passing grade.

With lessons being so costly to learn, you can be sure that parents taught their children everything they knew. Fathers taught their sons and mothers taught their daughters in the only way they could, making their children work side-by-side with them, as they did the things they needed to do to survive. Failure to do so was costly, as the children would probably not survive.

This included a wide range of skills. They couldn’t just go to the store for things they needed and commerce probably hadn’t even reached the point of a stable barter system.

Basically, if you needed something, you had to make it yourself; so you’d better know how. That meant you’d better teach your children as well.

Hunting and Tracking

I’m not sure how it is in the rest of the country, but where I live, hunting consists of hiding in a blind and baiting deer (and other animals) into killing range with feed corn.

That’s not the way I learned to hunt as a child and I’m sure it’s not the way that our prehistoric ancestors hunted. For them, hunting meant tracking animals to find them and killing them with primitive weapons.

If the average hunter today was forced to track their game, they would probably starve to death. Most can’t even identify animal tracks and sign, let alone knowing how old they are or what other messages those tracks might be sending.

In addition to tracking animals, our prehistoric ancestors learned their habits. They didn’t have to follow game around for days, as they knew how to find where they slept, where they ate and where they went for water.

So they could stake out those areas, awaiting the arrival of their prey, a much more efficient way to hunt.

Making Weapons

Those prehistoric hunters had to make their own weapons as well. There are three weapons which have been passed through the ages; the knife, the spear and the bow.

While they have all gone through numerous design changes through the years, we find all three of these still in use today. That speaks volumes about their effectiveness.

Making weapons is an art, especially making them from natural materials, using only primitive tools to work with.

Being able to shape a bow out of a tree branch, with nothing more to work with than a stone knife and other rocks, can’t be easy.

Yet these hunters did just that, along with knapping arrowheads, spear points and knives.

While it is hard to imagine society falling to the point where the ability to make our own weapons, for both hunting and defense, is essential for survival; the possibility does exist.

An even greater possibility exists for having to make such weapons if we are suddenly thrust into a wilderness survival situation. Should that happen, our ability to make these weapons could very well spell the difference between life and death.

Finding Natural Shelter

I seriously doubt that mankind started out building houses, even the primitive sorts of houses made by indigenous tribes. Rather, what little evidence exists, shows that our earliest ancestors lived in caves, something they probably learned from wild animals.

Caves are actually excellent natural shelters, providing the essentials of protection from rain and wind, as well as doing a fairly good job of holding in heat.

Some prehistoric people groups, such as the Indians who populated Mesa Verde, improved upon their natural caves by using stones to make rooms, dividing large caves into private habitations for multiple families.

The idea of building homes came from these people migrating to areas where there were no natural caves to live in. So they were forced to use whatever materials were at hand to build an artificial cave. I imagine those first houses were rather primitive by today’s standards, but they did the job, protecting their owners from the elements.

Sadly, we don’t have any examples of what they looked like, so that we could learn their technique. But I would venture to guess, they were simply more primitive or rustic versions of the native houses we have seen.

Making Clothing from Animal Skins

According to the Book of Genesis, the first clothing was made by sewing fig leaves together. While that may have covered their bodies, I’m sure it didn’t wear well. God solved that problem for Adam and Eve by killing animals and making them clothes out of the animal’s skins.

One of the many ways that mankind is unique is our need for clothing. No other species on the face of the Earth needs to wear clothes; those that need it, have fur to keep them warm. But even the hairiest of humans doesn’t have enough hair to do much for retaining warmth.

Using the skins of animals that they had hunted is a logical solution to the problem of clothing. After all, those pelts kept the animals warm, so therefore, they should work to keep people warm as well. The amazing thing is that prehistoric man figured out how to tan leather, so that those skins would last and then figured out how to sew it together to make clothes.

But rare is the hunter today that has any idea of how to tan their own hides, making it into useful leather or pelts. Rather, we send it off to commercial operations which do that for us. If we were ever caught in a long-term survival situation, knowing how tan hides would be an extremely useful skill.

Edible Wild Plants

As preppers, it seems that we focus more on the hunter side of being hunter-gatherers. I personally don’t have an issue with this, since I’m a definite carnivore. But in a survival situation, knowing what plants are safe to eat is a real boon to the diet.

I’ve been at this survival stuff for a long time, over 40 years. But I am still weak on edible plant recognition. It’s not that I haven’t studied it, it’s that I don’t use that knowledge. So, I end up losing it and need to study it again.

If we aren’t eating the edible plants that nature provides, there is no way that we are going to retain that knowledge for a very long.

The Value of Medicinal Plants

Speaking of plants, early medicine was all herbal medicine. There wasn’t a pharmaceutical industry. Doctors, by whatever name, learned what plants could be used for treating various ailments and how to use them. This information was closely guarded and passed on to an apprentice by word of mouth.

Those early doctors had to gather their own plants and make their own medicines, which consisted mostly of poultices and teas. While I’m sure there are many things they couldn’t treat, they obviously had some success, because their knowledge developed into the modern Medical Industry.

Even today, there are people who are experts in natural medicine, deriving medicines from plants. But these people are largely ignored in modern society, mostly because doctors use products produced by pharmaceutical houses.

But that doesn’t negate the value of natural medicine, as many of the medicines we use today have their roots in those natural medicines. All the pharmaceutical companies do is find artificial ways of creating things that nature provides to us.

If a serious enough of a disaster were to occur, such as an EMP, pharmaceuticals would run out quickly, leaving us without any medicines, other than natural medicines. Having the knowledge of what plants can be used for medicines and how to use them would be an incredibly useful skill in such a situation.

Situational Awareness

I think the American Indians (who qualify as a prehistoric people because they don’t have a written history) and other warlike tribal peoples invented the whole idea of situational awareness. Life was dangerous for these people, full of not only dangers from nature, but from other tribes as well.

The ability to recognize danger, before it manifests is a critical skill; one that is truly lacking in the world today. The world around us, especially the animal kingdom, is sending us constant messages of reassurance or danger, yet we don’t recognize them. We merely hear the birds chirping and think how nice it sounds, not that it might actually mean something.

The Value of Community

Early man was tribal, with the village being the tribe. This was even true of migratory people who followed the animals they hunted. Banding together helped them in the hunt, in defense and in sharing other common tasks. Ultimately, this made survival easier for them and led to the establishment of cities and society.

This is probably another skill that prehistoric man learned from watching animals. Many species of animals live in groups or herds. Predators found it easier to hunt together in packs and their prey found it easier to survive by staying together and presenting a united front. While some always died, the herd itself survived, which was the important part.

As mankind banded together, individuals began to specialize in specific tasks, putting their energies into performing those tasks and becoming more adept at them. This led to the beginning of the barter system, where these skilled artisans would trade their handwork for other things they needed.

Specialization was an important stepping stone in the development of society, as it increased the efficiency of individuals’ work, while at the same time providing a platform for improvement and innovation. Those who specialized in making certain handicrafts developed the skills and interest necessary to find ways of improving their products.

Through this, new features improved the traditional weapons and tools that primitive man used. Over the course of time, this actually led to the industrial revolution.

Waste Not

Primitive man didn’t waste anything. We see this best, through examining the culture of the American Indians. They used every part of the animals the killed, letting nothing go to waste. Internal organs, which were not eaten, were often made into containers, sinew was turned into bow strings, bone became tools and weapon handles, and skins turned into clothing and housing.

You never found a waste dump located next to an Indian village. That’s because there wasn’t any garbage to throw away. Rather, they made use of pretty much everything in one way or another.

Should we find ourselves in a survival situation, we would need to do the same!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Net Neutrality And The Law of Unintended Consequences

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I sometimes wonder if Congress is capable of doing anything good in today’s modern society. As best as I can tell, the legislative branch of the government, which the framers of the Constitution specified as being the only branch of the government to create new laws, has lost much of its original function.

Between the courts creating law from the bench and the (former) president using Executive Orders, it seems that Congress is passing less and less laws, with less and less impact, these days.

Now it seems that they are more about spending money and increasing the size of government, than they are about actually creating new laws. Much of that ends up doing little more than causing problems, especially giving the various agencies in the Executive Branch an opportunity to create new regulations to control our lives and hamper businesses.

Part of the platform that President Trump ran under was the promise to reduce government regulations. One of his earliest actions upon assuming the presidency was to issue an executive order stating that for every new regulation any government agency promulgates, they must get rid of two old ones.

Trump is a businessman above all so, much of what he is doing is being done from that viewpoint. His war on regulations is a prime example of this. All regulations cost individuals and businesses money, so by reducing regulations, he is trying to reduce the cost to businesses, thereby creating a better business environment.

Government regulation has become the bane of businesses, especially small businesses. Large corporations can afford staffs of lawyers to read all those regulations and determine what actions the corporation must take to follow them.

But the small business owner can’t afford that. They have to depend on their own ability to understand the miles of red tape the government produces, a task at which they are usually woefully inadequate.

Yet the largest part of our economic growth, especially the creation of new jobs, comes from those small businesses. So by creating mountains of regulations, government agencies are stifling the very businesses which we need the most; those that are growing the economy.

Yes, there are places where we need the government to create laws and regulations, but the idea of the government putting their sticky fingers in every aspect of life and business is counterproductive. At a minimum, they hurt the economy, and at the worst, they destroy people’s lives.

Here’s Why We Can Never Win This War!

Trying to protect one thing, like the environment, with more regulations, usually hurts some other part of society. Often an area that the creators of the regulations never even thought about (usually because that area is not part of their purview).

Herein lies one of the biggest problems of big government. In an attempt to protect society, government agencies actually stifle the very society they are supposedly trying to protect. They do it by not taking everything into consideration, when they create the new regulations.

I have to say, while a lot of the blame belongs to government agencies creating regulations, a fair amount of it belongs to Congress as well. Bills are getting longer and longer, becoming more and more complicated all the time.

Remember Nancy Pelosi’s comment that the House of Representatives would have to pass the Obamacare bill, so that they could see what was in it? The bill was literally too long and complicated for the members of Congress to read and understand. And look where that’s gotten us.

Like much of what comes out of Washington these days, Obamacare is a perfect example of the Law of Unintended Consequences. There have been countless problems with the rollout of Obamacare and countless people hurt by it. Have people been helped? Yes, especially those who had pre-existing medical conditions and those who were newly eligible for Medicaid. But it probably hurt as many people as it helped, if not more.

Did the creators of Obamacare know that it was going to hurt millions of people? We’ll never truly know. The cynical side of me says that they knew and didn’t care, purposely lying so that they could take that step towards socialized medicine. But my cynicism isn’t proof of anything and shouldn’t be taken as if it is.

Each and every law; each and every regulation, has unintended consequences. That alone seems to be adequate reason to avoid passing new laws and regulations, especially the massive ones that Washington is becoming infamous for. Maybe short, simple laws can be passed without a lot of that happening, but the monstrosities that we’re seeing today clearly can’t.

Enter Net Neutrality Bill

Of course, every major law being presented in Congress is becoming a media circus today, rather than a serious action on behalf of our government. Bills are being given deceptive names and descriptions, in order to gain public favor and push our elected representatives into passing laws that don’t do what their public image promises they will do.

The media, too lazy to really read the proposed bills and regulations, grabs hold of those printed sound bites and runs with them, creating a false narrative that is more propaganda than anything else.

Net Neutrality was one of those. Two years ago, during Obama’s second term in office, Net Neutrality was pushed through, not as a bill in Congress, but as a regulation promulgated by the FCC. To do so, the FCC had to take the stand that internet access was a public utility, giving them the right to regulate it.

But why was this even considered? Was the internet broken? Was there something seriously wrong, which Net Neutrality sought to correct? Or was this just one more example of the government meddling in things they didn’t need to meddle in?

The core of Net Neutrality was the idea that all information crossing the internet should be given the same priority and be sent along at the same speed.

Video first seen on TheBlaze.

Big companies shouldn’t be given any preference over small companies. At least, that’s the way it was sold to the American people. The whole propaganda campaign associated with Net Neutrality was to protect the little guys on the internet from the big guys.

But here’s the kicker; many of the biggest internet companies actually supported Net Neutrality. How does that fit in with reigning them in? You can be sure that those big companies didn’t support the idea out of altruism. There must have been some benefit to them, or they would have been speaking out against it.

There was an advantage. Net Neutrality only dealt with ISPs, Internet Service Providers. The big internet Corporations are their own ISPs, so they can readily avoid anything having to do with Net Neutrality.

But the little guys are controlled by it. So, the advantage actually goes to the very same companies which are supposed to be reined in by Net Neutrality.

This past week the FCC undid Net Neutrality, taking it back off the books and making things like they were before. I’d have to say, in today’s political climate, that was an incredible act of moral courage.

All too many times, bad laws and bad regulations stay in place, just because everyone is afraid to eliminate them and catch the political backlash for doing so.

What This Really Needed?

Of course, those on the political left have been going bananas over this, with each one trying to outdo the other in their declarations about the internet apocalypse that is about to occur. Internet apocalypse? It seems to me that the internet was working just fine before Net Neutrality existed.

But it’s easy to sell a narrative like that, when the people who are consuming the propaganda are ignorant to the issue. And if there is anywhere where the average person has plenty of chance to be ignorant, it’s the internet. The colossus we refer to as the internet is too complicated for most people to understand. It takes years of study and training to even get to the beginning of truly understanding it.

My son is a high-level network engineer, working for an ISP. Even though I used to be an engineering manager, when he talks about his work, the bandwidth is so high, that I’m barely catching the bottom edge of it. The things he needs to know, in order to do his job, are so technical that there’s no way for me to follow.

Yet we have lawmakers and pundits trying to act as if they are experts on this highly technical field. They’re not. In many cases, all they are doing is spouting off their party’s talking points, while mixing in a little fear mongering for flavor.

Let me give you just one simple example of how Net Neutrality hurts everyone; the telephone. Today, most long-distance phone calls travel over the internet. Unlike movies, which are able to stream faster than they are viewed, spooling on the user’s computer to avoid interruption, phone calls can’t do that. They aren’t pre-recorded, they’re live. So they can’t spool. They have to go out in real time. What that means is that if telephone calls aren’t given priority on internet lines, there will be pauses in the call, caused by other traffic butting in.

Here’s another one for you. One of the major corporations who have supported Net Neutrality is Netflix. It just so happens that they are one of the biggest consumers of internet bandwidth, as high-definition video takes an enormous amount of bandwidth to transmit. What this means is that your search for anything on the internet is slowed down, at least to some extent, by Netflix streaming video to your friends, neighbors and others you don’t know.

Should Netflix have the same priority as someone who is trying to make a few bucks with their blog? Should they have a higher priority? Well, since they are such a big customer, they don’t have to work through an ISP. That means that Net Neutrality gave them an advantage over the small guy, trying to run his blog. Is that fair?

Eliminating Net Neutrality is going to have unintended consequences; I guarantee it. I’m sure that we’ll be hearing stories of it, compliments of the mainstream media. They were against the elimination of Net Neutrality from the outset, just because that’s the liberal point of view. So you can be sure that they’re already chomping at the bit to tell us all what a disaster its elimination has been, even if they have to stretch the truth to do so.

Even so, eliminating Net Neutrality is going to have positive effects as well, specifically for the consumer. Any time regulations are eliminated, it frees up businesses to be more competitive. So, chances are we’re going to see new products coming out of ISPs in the next few months.

I can’t tell you what they’ll be, because I don’t know. But they should save consumers money, by giving them what they want and need, rather than what someone else tells them they want and need. And that’s a good thing.

What do you think?

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Quite A Year For North Korea. What’s Next?

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2017 has been quite a year for the Kim dynasty in North Korea. Ever since the Soviets gave control to Kim Il-sung in 1948, the North Koreans have been bent on military dominance. While this may seem like nothing more than a dictator running amok to the rest of the world, there really is some solid reasoning behind their madness.

One of the key goals for the Kim dynasty has been the reunification of the Korean peninsula under their rule. Their bid to reunify the Korean peninsula in 1950, starting the Korean War, was a failure, thanks to the intervention of the United States.

But that war never really ended. All we did was sign an armistice.

The only real outcome of the Korean War was to make North Korea and the United States bitter enemies. As with Japan in World War II, the North Koreans have come to realize that they will not be able to accomplish their goals, unless they can first stop the superpower that is getting in their way.

That means finding some way of neutralizing the United States’ massive amount of military power.

Here’s Why We Can Never Win Against North Korea!

Hence the North Korean fascination with developing nuclear weapons and the intercontinental ballistic missiles to deliver them. The reasoning in Pyongyang, is that the only thing which can neutralize US military might is nuclear weapons.

The other thing that the North Koreans have done is to build the world’s largest submarine fleet. Traditionally, submarines are the biggest threat to aircraft carriers, the US government’s number one tool of choice, when it is necessary to project power into some part of the world. If the Korean War ever turns hot again, you can be sure that some of the first military forces we will have supporting the theater of conflict will fly off the decks of aircraft carriers.

But until recent times, we’ve been able to ignore all this. President after president has kicked the can of the North Korean threat down the road, attempting to placate the North Koreans and keeping their aggression under control at the same time.

All that has changed in the last year. Left-leaning politicians and the news media have hammered President Trump mercilessly over his ongoing word battle with Kim Jong-un. They have seen it as an unnecessary escalation of tensions between the United States government and the government of Pyongyang.

There’s just one problem with that though, it assumes that everything is the same as it was before… and it’s not.

Things are distinctly different today, than they were at the beginning of the year. 2017 opened with North Korean being the normal nuisance we’ve all come to expect. They made what were thought to be idle threats, while mistreating their own population, starving them so that they could spend their money on military research.

That research has paid off handsomely for the North Korean ruler, as North Korea has made breakthrough after breakthrough, taking us from relative safety to imminent danger. In the last few months, they have tested their first multi-stage nuclear device, what they claim is a hydrogen bomb, giving them nuclear weapons that are ten times stronger than what they had before, as well as being roughly on par with our own.

At the same time, 2017 has seen an increased number of missile launches out of North Korea, with each missile being more technologically advanced than its predecessor. At the beginning of the year, these launches were mostly laughable, with missiles exploding on launch, never reaching their target altitude, and demonstrating a large number of other problems.

Yet there has been a clear improvement in the performance of North Korea’s missiles. The last couple of them have been multi-stage devices, which are true ICBMs. With the launch of the Hwasong-15 missile in November, North Korea claims to now have the capability of launching ICBMs which have the capability of reaching the entire continental United States, carrying nuclear weapons to destroy the city of their choosing.

Video first seen on Fox News.

While some of this may be exaggeration and bravado, the technical realities are clear. A host of people track North Korea’s missile tests, including scientists working for the South Korean government and our own. Based upon their reports, not just North Korea’s, the Hwasong-15 is a formidable weapon, which directly threatens the USA.

All through this process, there has been an amazing amount of unbelief being expressed by pundits and experts alike. Each advance has been explained away with talk about the huge hurdles that North Korea still has to overcome, in order to field effective nuclear-tipped ICBMs.

But that seems more and more like wishful thinking, than any true analysis. The North Koreans have either sidestepped these hurdles or have shown their ability to overcome them.

One of the big hurdles that didn’t appear was the necessity to “miniaturize” their nuclear weapons. We heard about that ad-nauseam, as the news hammered the story that things weren’t as bad as they seemed. But then a report from the Obama years surfaced, showing that North Korea had been designing their nukes to be miniaturized from the beginning. So much for that “huge technical hurdle.” It simply vanished like the morning fog.

It’s quite possible that the same can be said for some of the other technical hurdles that have been mentioned. North Korean scientists have the advantage of being able to learn from the mistakes of the US missile program, as well as that of other countries.

While there is a huge amount of material that is highly classified, there is plenty that is openly available. Science is science, and it knows no security classification.

As with the “problem” of miniaturizing nukes, I’m sure that the North Koreans have been working on issues with reentry heat and aiming of their missiles. It’s even possible that they solved those problems long ago, as they were working on other issues. We really have no way of knowing.

Where Does This Leave Us?

The truth is that there is nothing stopping the North Koreans from launching a nuclear strike against the United States, Japan or South Korea, except the North Koreans themselves. Even though we have some missile defenses in place, we may not have enough to stop a concerted attack.

Besides, chances are that the North Koreans know what we have, where we have it and what those defenses’ capabilities are. While that information may very well be classified, those defenses have been around for enough time and tested sufficiently, so that there isn’t much about them that is truly secret anymore.

Any military plan has to take into account the capabilities of the enemy. So you can be sure that there are people in North Korea’s military who have looked at our anti-missile capabilities and are working on plans to overcome them.

This could mean shooting the missiles at us from a direction where we are not protected, overwhelming our defenses by sending too many missiles, or developing some technology that spoofs our missile defense.

The point is, there is little likelihood that the North Koreans are going to attack, before they are at least reasonably sure that their attack will be successful. So however they do it, you can be sure that it will be well planned, well coordinated and intended to succeed.

Chances are fairly good that at least part of their attack will be a high-altitude EMP. That would give them the most bang for their buck, limiting our ability to retaliate. Sending an EMP, along with some missiles fused for more conventional nuclear attack would be the best of both worlds for the North Koreans, essentially copying American nuclear war plans from the Cold War.

The problem for you and I is that our country is totally unprepared for such an attack. In many ways, we were better prepared in the 1960s, when people at least knew to “duck and cover.” While we have technology today, which we didn’t have back then, the general population is totally untrained in surviving either an EMP or a conventional nuclear exchange.

Worse than that, the government just de-established the EMP Commission, the country’s only group of true experts on EMP. So we don’t even have anyone in government service who is working on creating an EMP survival plan.

Of course, the government hasn’t paid much attention to the work that the EMP Commission did anyway. Congress never saw EMP survival as a priority, partially because there were no immediate, visible benefits, which would help them get reelected. So that can kept getting kicked on down the road as well.

What this means is that if we are going to survive an EMP or a conventional nuclear attack from North Korea, it’s going to be up to you and I to prepare for it on our own.

We can’t count on FEMA showing up with their mountains of red tape, or any other government agency raising a finger to ensure our survival. If we don’t ensure it ourselves, we’ll simply become part of the 90% of the population that the EMP Commission projects will die off in the first year after an EMP.

The Worst Possible Scenario

Of all the potential survival situations we face, surviving an EMP is probably the worst. Unfortunately, it is also one of the most likely. So it’s not the type of thing we can just ignore, hoping that it will never happen. That’s what all the sheeple out there are doing, making it so that they are the ones who will suffer, if North Korea ever does attack us.

An EMP attack would actually be more devastating than a conventional nuclear attack.

While a conventional attack would gut a number of our major cities, killing millions of people, the area affected by each nuclear explosion would actually be rather limited. An EMP, on the other hand, has the potential of shutting down the entire country, leaving us without any sort of electrical power or infrastructure we could count on.

It is the loss of the infrastructure which will ultimately cause something like 300 million deaths, not the EMP itself. Without electrical power and the infrastructure that depends on it so much, movement of critical supplies, like food, from production to market would come to a stop. Without food and supplies, people will be dependent on only what is available where they live. When that gets used up, they’ll be in trouble.

There will be a race between starvation and those who are working to reestablish the electrical grid. But I fear that starvation will win. The necessary materials to rebuild the grid just don’t exist, so they will have to be made.

That takes too long, as the normal lead time for the transformers used in electrical sub-stations is a year. There just isn’t the production capability to make tens of thousands of them on a rush basis. Nor will there be the raw material available or the ability to create that raw material. Other than a few select areas, people will have to learn how to survive without electricity.

The problems caused by the loss of the grid will clearly be more severe in the cities, than it will be in rural areas. The sheer mass of people competing for limited resources will cause a huge increase in crime, as people seek food, creating gang-style warfare. Surviving the months following an EMP will require a combination of self-sufficiency and the ability to defend yourself and your resources.

Some smaller communities might band together, sharing resources and helping each other out. But this is much more likely in communities where there will be an abundance of resources, such as rural farming communities. People living in such communities are used to working together and helping each other out anyway, making it much easier for them to work together in a post-EMP world.

For the rest of us, survival of the fittest will become the rule.

No food stockpile will be big enough to sustain a family until things return to normal. Rather, the people who will do the best will be those who can quickly adapt to sustaining themselves, converting their home and property into a homestead.

Are you ready?

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

References:

https://www.globalfirepower.com/navy-submarines.asp

The Holiday Games Are On Once Again

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With Thanksgiving now firmly behind us, we’re full-blown into the holiday season. The race is on, rushing downhill towards Christmas at breakneck speed. Stopping only long enough to visit the malls and max out our credit cards, buying gifts that people don’t want, with money we don’t have, so that they can bring those gifts back to the stores and get a refund…

What a system!

In case you didn’t notice, I’m not particularly thrilled with the holidays. It’s not that I don’t like Thanksgiving, Christmas or New Year’s Eve, it’s that I think we’ve lost the essence of what they are. No longer are the holidays about their original meanings, which were all of a religious nature. Nor do we see much of the secondary meanings of family, friends and love… those seem to have been largely lost as well.

Thanksgiving has become a day of gluttony and football, Christmas a celebration of materialism and New Year’s Eve is just a drunken party.

On top of this, you can be sure that somebody, probably somebody on the political left, is going to be politicizing the holidays once again, being loudly and publically offended that someone actually had the affront to say “Merry Christmas” to them, rather than the more politically correct, “Happy Holidays.”

As I’m sitting here, writing this, I’m counting the minutes until I hear that someone or other has declared “Christmas” to be racist and demanded that the name be changed to something without meaning. After all, the left has been attacking every other symbol of our country’s heritage, why wouldn’t they attack Christmas as well?

Dr. Seuss’ neo-classic tale of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” should be a real eye-opener to us. I’m sure you remember the story; about how the Grinch, whose heart was three sizes too small, hated everything, including Christmas. So he decided he would ruin Christmas for everyone else… by stealing it.

The Grinch’s problem, which he didn’t realize ahead-of-time, was that Christmas was about more to the Whos down in Whoville, than just the stuff. It wasn’t really about presents, decorations and food, it was about the greatest love story ever told. He though that removing the symbols of Christmas would remove the story and cause the Whos to cry, “boo-hoo.”

But his nefarious plan didn’t work. We all know the story. As the Grinch stood there up to his knees in the snow, waiting to tip his sleigh and send all the Christmas the stuff crashing down the mountainside, he didn’t hear crying, he heard the Whos, lifting their voices up in song, giving thanks for the day, even without their presents, decorations and Christmas feast.

Are We Facing a Modern Grinch?

As I remember this story, I ask myself the question, what if that was America? What if the Grinch magically appeared this Christmas and somehow managed to steal Christmas, right at the stroke of midnight, on Christmas Eve?

Would he hear singing coming from our homes on Christmas morning, or would he hear something else? Would our joy in the day cause his heart to grow three sizes, or would he feel vindicated, that he had made everyone else feel his bitterness towards the holidays?

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Sadly, I think the Grinch would win that contest in today’s world. Too few of us ever take the time to stop and think about what the holidays are really all about. We are so wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of buying presents, attending events, watching Christmas specials on TV and spending money to see what really matters, the people around us.

There are still millions of people out of work. Homelessness has reached epic proportions in some cities, especially amongst veterans. Hollywood is exploding with revelations about the sexual abuse that’s been going on there for decades.

Our prisons are full of people who are wasting their lives, rather than investing them in something worthwhile. Countless children live in homes with only one parent, and countless more go to bed hungry at night. People are hurting all around us, while we focus on glitz and glamour, seeing only the flashing lights and sound bites the media wants us to see.

What of those people? What of all the hurting people out there? Isn’t Christmas about them too? Who is reaching out to them, letting them know that someone feels their pain, sees their sorrow and cares about their lives?

Video first seen on gregorija1.

A truly great holiday season has to include caring for the needs of others. Those could be people who you know, who are going through hard times. But it could also be those you don’t know. Either way, it’s not about throwing a few dollars their way, funneled through some do-gooder charity that does the work for you. Yes, these people need out money, but even more, they need our time. They need us.

It is one thing to be willing to spend money on those in need; the Democrats proclaim that idea all the time. They are quick to push programs that take money out of working people’s pockets, so that they can then use that money to buy votes from the poor, lining the pockets of some well-connected (Democrat) bureaucrats along the way.

What Christmas Spirit is All About

But it is something totally different to give of yourself, especially your time, to others, especially those in need. Isn’t that the true spirit of Christmas though? For that matter, isn’t that the true spirit of giving?

Would it mean more to a homeless man to receive a hat, coat and shoes in your name, through some anonymous non-profit organization, or to receive it from your hand? Would it have meant more for them to enjoy on a scrumptious Thanksgiving feast in a homeless shelter or in your home?

Which is more important the money or the personal element that is behind the money?

My family has had a tradition for years of opening our home to those who are alone on the holidays. Sometimes, those are widows who have lost their husbands. Other times, it is young single people, who don’t have any family to be with. Still others, it has been those out of work or in some other need. It really doesn’t matter; in all cases, our home is theirs, at least for a little while.

I spend a lot of time in this column talking about politics; about the “big picture” of what’s going on in the world. But in reality, it’s the little things that matter. Yes, political events shape the world in which we live, affecting each and every one of our lives.

But the reality is, other than making our voice heard in the halls of power and our vote count on election day, you and I have little impact on what politicians do. They will make the big decisions, leaving the little ones for you and me.

But it is in those little things that we can make a difference in others lives. Aren’t we all called to that? Isn’t that part of what it means to be a human; to be an American? If we pass through this life, without making a difference in the lives of others, what purpose does our life really have?

My first mission is to my family. I have a responsibility to my wife, kids, parents, brother and sister. I must take care of them first. From there, the next circle of responsibility I have is to those who are close to me; friends, neighbors and co-workers; people in my church. The next larger circle includes people like you; people who I can help with the words that I write, whether it is teaching about survival or warning you of impending doom.

Finally, there is the circle around that, which includes everyone I see and come into contact with. Somehow, I have a responsibility to them as well, even if it is not as great as that to my family.

When I see a need, I do what I can. That’s why I teach about survival. There are many needs in the world, many dangers, and I am trying to help those in need. But I don’t let it stop there. Everywhere I look, I see people in need. To ignore them, I have to give up part of my humanity. And that’s not a price I’m willing to pay. So I pay it, doing what I can, helping whoever I can reach.

Some day, I may not be able to help those people. After all, my responsibility to my family is much greater. Should it come to a choice between the two, I must help my family first. I must be there for them. If that means turning my back on those others, in order to care for my family, then so be it. A little of my humanity will die, but I will have made the right decision.

Until then, it hurts me not at all to say “Merry Christmas” to them, to buy them a meal, to clothe those who are cold, or to sit and listen to one pour out their hurting heart. If my time spent can ease the burden for them, even a little, then I have made a difference.

I have made the holiday season about someone besides me. I have made it about something much bigger than me. I have made a difference in someone’s life.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Why Have We Got Thanksgiving All Wrong?

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As we hit Thanksgiving week once again, many are reminded of the need to give thanks for the many blessings we all enjoy. Sadly, we need that reminder, as many of us are too busy complaining about what we don’t have, to remember to give thanks for what we do have.

It’s basically impossible to be both thankful and ungrateful at the same time, as the two are polar opposites. But in our negatively focused world, the negative emotion of ungratefulness seems to take charge, overriding any feelings of thanksgiving.

There are many people in our country who are never really thankful. Rather, they are bitter about life in general and our country specifically.

They don’t see this day as an annual celebration of thanksgiving, but rather as an annual reminder of the wrongs that our country has done.

Yes, our country has done wrongs. We aren’t perfect by a long shot.

But the revisionist history that the progressive-liberal left is pushing these days is far from the truth. For some reason, they have chosen to vilify every action of this great land of ours, and are determined to turn everything we Americans have ever done to bad, applying negative motivations to everything our forefathers did.

These people are essentially projecting their ideology onto the past, trying to show how the things they claim are wrong with this country have existed since the beginning. They ignore the true lessons of history and the true actions of those who came before us, in favor of spewing forth hatred.

Much of this hatred is racially based. As Booker T. Washington once said,

“There is a certain class of ‘race-problem solvers’ who don’t want the patient to get well, because as long as the disease holds out they have not only an easy means of making a living, but also an easy medium through which to make themselves prominent before the public.”  

It seems that this class of people is still alive and well in America today.

Buy why should discontentment ever override thanksgiving? What is there in the human soul, which desires to complain rather than to give thanks? What has happened to this country, where we have forgotten about the importance of “happiness” in our pursuit of happiness?

I would have to say that there is more grumbling and complaining in America today, than there is in many other countries, which aren’t as well off. In fact, you rarely hear the people of those countries complain.

Oh, they might complain about their back hurting from hard work, but even that is minimal. Rarely do they complain about their country’s history, about being oppressed, or about how others have it better off than they do.

Actually, if those people talk about how others are better off than they are, it is as a dream; the dream of attaining that place for themselves. Much of the world still looks to America and the American Dream as something to be attained. That’s why hundreds of thousands of them come to America every year, by whatever means possible, including coming here illegally.

Those people come here looking for opportunity; for to them, America is still the land of opportunity. Yet there are those who languish inside our own borders, who don’t see the opportunity all around them. They complain about what they don’t have, rather than doing what they can to get it for themselves, missing opportunities that are right in front of their eyes.

This complaining attitude that we see all around us is actually a symptom of our affluence. As crazy as it may seem, when people don’t have to work hard to survive, they are much more likely to complain. With the ever-expanding welfare state we have in the USA today, there are many who have nothing better to do, than to complain.

So Many Reasons to Be Thankful For

I give thanks that I was born in this great country. No, it isn’t perfect, nor are the American people perfect. But it is way ahead of whatever is in second place.

I know many people in many parts of the world, and none of them live with all the advantages that we have in this country, regardless of our ethnic origins, gender or creed. We are a truly unique country; and for that, we should give thanks.

So, if people from other lands still see the United States of America as the land of opportunity, yet our own citizens don’t, where’s the disconnect? Who is wrong? Is it that those people just don’t see how evil our country really is? Or could it be that those of us why are discontented don’t understand who we are and the blessings they have received?

Are there people who have it better than others? Yes there are. Some are born with the advantage of wealth, but they are truly in the minority.

The true “advantage” that most have, isn’t wealth, but parents. They were born into a home with married parents who were committed to their children and to each other. They were taught a good work ethic. They were taken to church regularly. They were forced to do their homework. They were encouraged to study in college and they were disciplined by those parents, when they did wrong.

This is called “white privilege” by some, but it really isn’t a racial privilege, as it crosses racial lines. Children of every ethnicity, who grow up under the same conditions, have the same results, regardless of the color of their skin, the bathroom they use or the church they go to.

If there is any real privilege in this country, it is the privilege of being born an American. While the American Dream may not be what it once was, this is still the land of opportunity. Every day, people from all walks of life succeed, not because they are privileged, but because of having a dream and are willing to do the hard work necessary to turn that dream into reality.

I give thanks that I grew up in a country where my success isn’t dependent on my parents’ pedigree, but instead is based upon my own hard work. Were it not so, I wouldn’t be as successful as I am today. While some would want to destroy that, so far, it still stands.

Are there those who try and control society, business and the government? Yes there are. But show me a time and place in world history, where there wasn’t a group of “elite” people who were trying to control society, business and government. I don’t care if you refer to them as royalty, the Central Committee of the Communist Party or the oligarchy; there are always those who take control, “ruling” in their time and place.

American oligarchs are no more evil than the kings and princes of the past. Nor are they more selfish than the Politburo of the now-defunct Soviet Union. Whatever group of “elites” take control in whatever age of history, do so for their own benefit. There is no “class” of perfect, unselfish people who can be entrusted to rule, because they will always do what is best for others.

Yes, there have been those in authority, who have used their authority for the benefit of others, but they are in the minority. Even then, you can be assured that they used their positions for their own benefit, the benefit of their families and the benefit of their friends as well. That’s human nature.

But we can give thanks that the oligarchs of today, which some love to complain about, are at least doing so in a culture and under a political system, that allows their actions to give advantage to many others, not just themselves. While they may make millions more than the average middle-class person does, the corporations they are running give jobs to thousands of those middle-class people.

Thankful for What Makes Us Different

If there is one thing that America has given to the world, it is a system which allows the greatest opportunity for the most people to be lifted out of poverty. Our capitalistic, free-market system has generated more wealth and lifted more people out of poverty, than any other political-economic system ever devised my man. It may not be perfect, but it is the best we have.

In fact, it is so good, that it has been exported to the rest of the world. While many think of Coca-Cola and other such products as our biggest exports, they are not. Freedom, liberty, self-determination, and our free-market system are our biggest exports.

And they are exports which are changing the world.

Yet there are those who villainize that very same system, speaking of the “moral superiority” of socialism. How can it be morally superior to make everyone equally poor, while the elite still enjoy their positions of prestige and wealth? The very idea that such a socialist system is superior is beyond me, even without looking at the historic reality of how every socialist country has become communist, repressing individual liberty and stealing from the people. Any “superior system” would have to be one which gives the most opportunity to the most people.

Even with the oligarchy that we have (assuming that you and I accept that it exists), we are still a society which is based upon self-determination. Nobody is telling us what job we have to do or placing a cap on how much money we can earn. That’s something else we can give thanks for.

Our political system, while filled with imperfect people, gives us the right to remove those who fail us, the people, and replace them with those who will look after our rights. That’s what the voting booth is for. We the people are supposed to be in control.

But this takes effort. We must educate ourselves, rather than merely accepting what others say. The chattering class has their own agenda and it is not in our favor. We must look beyond what they tell us and seek the truth. Otherwise, the mainstream media will do our voting for us. They’ve done it before and I can guarantee you, they want to do it again.

Maybe if we quit complaining about our political system and the politicians in it and started educating ourselves about the issues and candidates, we could do better. We could vote for candidates of integrity and solid values. We could once more take control of our government and make it once again, a government by the people and for the people.

The problems our country faces aren’t Washington’s fault; they are ours. We the people have allowed them to exist. So it is up to we the people to do something about them. That’s why we have a vote. That’s why we have a voice. We must learn to use it.

I thank God that I live in a country where I have the right to vote… and I pray that more of us would take that right seriously and use that right in the right way!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Social Security – How to Make the Most Out of It

Many of us are depending with trepidation on Social Security for our retirement years. It’s not that we want to depend on Social Security; it’s that we don’t have any other option. We don’t have retirement from the companies we’ve worked for; we don’t have fully-funded retirement accounts; and we don’t have the money we need sitting in bank accounts or investments.

The problem is, Social Security was never intended to be the only source of retirement income for senior citizens. The plan was based on providing 40% of a retired person’s income, not 100%.

Yet it is often a much higher percentage of a retiree’s total income, simply because they don’t have other sources.

With this in mind, it just makes sense to get the most out of your Social Security benefits. That means getting the biggest payments possible, so that you have enough to live on.

How Much Did You Make?

As with anything else that government bureaucrats control, your actual Social Security check depends on a formula that is used for calculating your benefits. There are several important factors which are used to determine how much you will earn at retirement.

Of these, the top three are:

  • How much you made during your working years – Your total earned income affects how much you and your employer(s) have paid into Social Security, which ultimately affects how much you receive. The more you’ve earned, the larger a check you will receive.
  • Your age at retirement – The longer you wait to file for Social Security, the more you’ll earn. We’ll talk more about this in a moment.
  • What year you were born – The “full retirement age” has changed over time. So the year you were born affects the age at which you are eligible for full retirement. Retiring before that age reduces your benefits.

Since Social Security is intended to pay a “portion” of your retirement, the amount you earned during your working years is important. Social Security assumes that you will work for 35 years, so any year that you do not work ends up counting as zero earnings. Of course, of you work more than 35 years, that’s not an issue; it’s only an issue for the years that you learn less.

While I’m sure that you have been trying to earn as much as you can throughout your working years, the amount you earn in your last years is especially important.

For comparison sake, I ran my own numbers on Social Security’s online Retirement Estimator. A $10,000 a year difference in earnings from now till I reach retirement age in seven years, works out to a difference of $106 per month once I retire. I chose a $10,000 a year difference, as that’s about what I could earn with a part-time job.

If you are planning on starting a retirement business, it would e worthwhile to start working on it now and add to your current income and subsequent Social Security benefits. Granted, you’ll end up paying more in taxes as well, but you’ll still end up with more in your pocket; and that’s what matters.

But Watch Out for This in Your First Retirement Year

While I’m a firm believer in retirement businesses, you have to be careful how much you make… at least during the first year of retirement. There’s a cap on how much you make that year, before it affects your Social Security benefits. That cap is somewhere around $16,000.

One way around this is to put your retirement business in someone else’s name, like your spouses. If you aren’t the same age or don’t retire at the same time, your spouse can earn the income from your business that first retirement year, then transfer the business over to you for subsequent years. That way, they won’t have that income showing up their first year of retirement.

When You Were Born

Once upon a time, the normal retirement age was considered to be 65. Actually, that was the understanding for a long time. But in recent years, that’s changed. Not only have companies been changing their retirement policies, but the Social Security Administration has been changing what it considered to be the age of retirement.

While you can file for and start receiving Social Security retirement benefits at 62 years of age, full retirement is based upon the year you were born. This is important, because early retirement (at 62) reduces your monthly income from social Security by about 30 percent.

So, let’s take a look at the full retirement age, based upon current law:

As you can see, the full retirement age, according to the Social Security Administration, has been gradually increasing from 65 years old to 67 years old. What this means is that if you were born in 1951 and your company retires you at 65 years of age, you’re stuck in a difficult situation.

If you apply for Social Security benefits at 65, you won’t get full benefits; they will be reduced by some percentage. You would have to wait a year, until you are 66 and apply then, in order to be able to receive full benefits.

What can I say; one more way in which your government is serving you.

Your Retirement Age

The biggest factor in determining how much you’ll receive in Social Security benefits is how old you are when you apply for them. Each year you retire before your full retirement age reduces your benefits from five to seven percent.

But the opposite is true as well. Each year that you wait, after reaching full retirement age will increase the amount you receive per month.

Take a look at this chart:

As you can see, we’re talking a huge monthly difference between retiring at 62 and retiring at 70. To put some real numbers on that, just for comparison’s sake, let’s look at a theoretical person’s monthly Social Security benefits upon retirement:

For comparison’s sake, the average Social Security benefit paid per month is $1,342 and the maximum amount that can be paid is $2,687 a month. As you can see, our theoretical person will be making a little less than the average, if they retire early at 62.

But they will make almost the maximum if they wait until 70 to retire.

These numbers actually work out to roughly the same amount of total Social Security benefits, depending on when the individual dies. If we assume that this theoretical person dies at 80 years of age, their total Social Security benefit works out to:

Looking at this, it’s clear that the maximum benefit is realized when one retires at Social Security’s full retirement age. But the issue for most of us isn’t how much total benefit we receive, it’s how much we receive per month.

In that case, the maximum benefit is actually realized by waiting until age 70 to apply for Social Security. Waiting longer doesn’t add anything to this amount, but applying earlier reduces the monthly income received.

Of course, you have to take your health into consideration on these decisions. If you are in good health, there’s no reason why you can’t live to 80 or older. But not everyone does. Some die considerably younger.

So if your health is not good, you might want to consider taking the younger retirement, even though you won’t receive as much of a Social Security payment per month.

Spouse’s Benefits

If you are married and die, your spouse is entitled to receive your Social Security benefits, or if they die, you are entitled to receive theirs. But you can only receive one. Your spouse can’t receive theirs and yours both, they have to choose between one and the other, obviously the one that will give them the larger payment.

One way to handle this, so as to get the most overall benefit, is to have the spouse with the lower expected social security benefit retire either at 62 or their full retirement age and the spouse who is going to receive the larger Social Security benefit retire at 70. What this does is leave the larger retirement in the pot longer, increasing the payments made when they are finally applied for.

Let me give you an example, using the same figures I’ve used above, with a couple who are both the same age. One spouse retires at 62, receiving $1,178 per month, but the other spouse doesn’t apply for Social Security, or applies and asks that their benefits be put on hold.

Then, regardless of which spouse dies first, when the survivor reaches 70 years old, they switch to the retirement of the other spouse, upping their monthly income to $2,329 per month.

There’s a lot of strategy that you can use in this, if you take the time to think it out. The big thing to do is to use the Social Security Administration’s online Retirement Estimator to determine how much you will receive, in a number of different scenarios.

Then, based on that and your other income, you can make the decision of what will work out best for you!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Social Security – How to Make the Most Out of It

Click here to view the original post.

Many of us are depending with trepidation on Social Security for our retirement years. It’s not that we want to depend on Social Security; it’s that we don’t have any other option. We don’t have retirement from the companies we’ve worked for; we don’t have fully-funded retirement accounts; and we don’t have the money we need sitting in bank accounts or investments.

The problem is, Social Security was never intended to be the only source of retirement income for senior citizens. The plan was based on providing 40% of a retired person’s income, not 100%.

Yet it is often a much higher percentage of a retiree’s total income, simply because they don’t have other sources.

With this in mind, it just makes sense to get the most out of your Social Security benefits. That means getting the biggest payments possible, so that you have enough to live on.

How Much Did You Make?

As with anything else that government bureaucrats control, your actual Social Security check depends on a formula that is used for calculating your benefits. There are several important factors which are used to determine how much you will earn at retirement.

Of these, the top three are:

  • How much you made during your working years – Your total earned income affects how much you and your employer(s) have paid into Social Security, which ultimately affects how much you receive. The more you’ve earned, the larger a check you will receive.
  • Your age at retirement – The longer you wait to file for Social Security, the more you’ll earn. We’ll talk more about this in a moment.
  • What year you were born – The “full retirement age” has changed over time. So the year you were born affects the age at which you are eligible for full retirement. Retiring before that age reduces your benefits.

Since Social Security is intended to pay a “portion” of your retirement, the amount you earned during your working years is important. Social Security assumes that you will work for 35 years, so any year that you do not work ends up counting as zero earnings. Of course, of you work more than 35 years, that’s not an issue; it’s only an issue for the years that you learn less.

While I’m sure that you have been trying to earn as much as you can throughout your working years, the amount you earn in your last years is especially important.

For comparison sake, I ran my own numbers on Social Security’s online Retirement Estimator. A $10,000 a year difference in earnings from now till I reach retirement age in seven years, works out to a difference of $106 per month once I retire. I chose a $10,000 a year difference, as that’s about what I could earn with a part-time job.

If you are planning on starting a retirement business, it would e worthwhile to start working on it now and add to your current income and subsequent Social Security benefits. Granted, you’ll end up paying more in taxes as well, but you’ll still end up with more in your pocket; and that’s what matters.

But Watch Out for This in Your First Retirement Year

While I’m a firm believer in retirement businesses, you have to be careful how much you make… at least during the first year of retirement. There’s a cap on how much you make that year, before it affects your Social Security benefits. That cap is somewhere around $16,000.

One way around this is to put your retirement business in someone else’s name, like your spouses. If you aren’t the same age or don’t retire at the same time, your spouse can earn the income from your business that first retirement year, then transfer the business over to you for subsequent years. That way, they won’t have that income showing up their first year of retirement.

When You Were Born

Once upon a time, the normal retirement age was considered to be 65. Actually, that was the understanding for a long time. But in recent years, that’s changed. Not only have companies been changing their retirement policies, but the Social Security Administration has been changing what it considered to be the age of retirement.

While you can file for and start receiving Social Security retirement benefits at 62 years of age, full retirement is based upon the year you were born. This is important, because early retirement (at 62) reduces your monthly income from social Security by about 30 percent.

So, let’s take a look at the full retirement age, based upon current law:

As you can see, the full retirement age, according to the Social Security Administration, has been gradually increasing from 65 years old to 67 years old. What this means is that if you were born in 1951 and your company retires you at 65 years of age, you’re stuck in a difficult situation.

If you apply for Social Security benefits at 65, you won’t get full benefits; they will be reduced by some percentage. You would have to wait a year, until you are 66 and apply then, in order to be able to receive full benefits.

What can I say; one more way in which your government is serving you.

Your Retirement Age

The biggest factor in determining how much you’ll receive in Social Security benefits is how old you are when you apply for them. Each year you retire before your full retirement age reduces your benefits from five to seven percent.

But the opposite is true as well. Each year that you wait, after reaching full retirement age will increase the amount you receive per month.

Take a look at this chart:

As you can see, we’re talking a huge monthly difference between retiring at 62 and retiring at 70. To put some real numbers on that, just for comparison’s sake, let’s look at a theoretical person’s monthly Social Security benefits upon retirement:

For comparison’s sake, the average Social Security benefit paid per month is $1,342 and the maximum amount that can be paid is $2,687 a month. As you can see, our theoretical person will be making a little less than the average, if they retire early at 62.

But they will make almost the maximum if they wait until 70 to retire.

These numbers actually work out to roughly the same amount of total Social Security benefits, depending on when the individual dies. If we assume that this theoretical person dies at 80 years of age, their total Social Security benefit works out to:

Looking at this, it’s clear that the maximum benefit is realized when one retires at Social Security’s full retirement age. But the issue for most of us isn’t how much total benefit we receive, it’s how much we receive per month.

In that case, the maximum benefit is actually realized by waiting until age 70 to apply for Social Security. Waiting longer doesn’t add anything to this amount, but applying earlier reduces the monthly income received.

Of course, you have to take your health into consideration on these decisions. If you are in good health, there’s no reason why you can’t live to 80 or older. But not everyone does. Some die considerably younger.

So if your health is not good, you might want to consider taking the younger retirement, even though you won’t receive as much of a Social Security payment per month.

Spouse’s Benefits

If you are married and die, your spouse is entitled to receive your Social Security benefits, or if they die, you are entitled to receive theirs. But you can only receive one. Your spouse can’t receive theirs and yours both, they have to choose between one and the other, obviously the one that will give them the larger payment.

One way to handle this, so as to get the most overall benefit, is to have the spouse with the lower expected social security benefit retire either at 62 or their full retirement age and the spouse who is going to receive the larger Social Security benefit retire at 70. What this does is leave the larger retirement in the pot longer, increasing the payments made when they are finally applied for.

Let me give you an example, using the same figures I’ve used above, with a couple who are both the same age. One spouse retires at 62, receiving $1,178 per month, but the other spouse doesn’t apply for Social Security, or applies and asks that their benefits be put on hold.

Then, regardless of which spouse dies first, when the survivor reaches 70 years old, they switch to the retirement of the other spouse, upping their monthly income to $2,329 per month.

There’s a lot of strategy that you can use in this, if you take the time to think it out. The big thing to do is to use the Social Security Administration’s online Retirement Estimator to determine how much you will receive, in a number of different scenarios.

Then, based on that and your other income, you can make the decision of what will work out best for you!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

The Truth About Guns, God And The Second Amendment

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The latest mass shooting to grab the media’s attention, in the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas, has sparked the national debate about firearms once again.

That “debate” which ebbs and flows with the news, is really a one-sided one, with proponents of gun control taking advantage of every one of these horrific events to try and further their political agenda. Those of us who support our Second Amendment rights merely stand our ground and let them wail and posture for the cameras.

It really doesn’t seem like those who are after gun control care much about the victims of these killings, other than as props for use in pushing their agenda.

I have yet to hear of one of them writing a letter of condolence (not a letter looking for support) to the families of victims. Nor have I heard of any of them taking action to support the survivors. Maybe some have, but I haven’t heard of it.

Actions of that type are likely to come out of those of us on the right anyway. The left is more than ready to give their time and money to social activism, but study after study has shown that it is the conservatives in this country who actually support non-profit organizations which help people.

So why the debate? Much of it is driven by fear.

3 Second SEAL Test Will Tell You If You’ll Survive A SHTF Situation

Everyone I know, who is in favor of gun control, is afraid of guns. Maybe there are some out there who aren’t, but the vast majority of them have never held a gun in their lives, are totally convinced that guns are evil incarnate, and therefore are convinced that anyone who would touch or own a gun has to be evil as well.

A Conflict Based on Ignorance

Ignorance in the gun control crowd is rabid. We see this constantly, as politicians, reporters and other public figures make mistake after mistake in their tirades against the evil of guns.

They are able to get away with false narratives, like calling semi-automatic rifles “assault weapons” and talking about the “gun show loophole,” simply because their audience doesn’t know any more about guns than they do.

This is part of what the people at the top, those behind the gun control movement are counting on. As with many such political movements, much is dependent on convincing the population that a lie is the truth. Hitler, who took over Germany with lies, put it best: “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” The left has repeated their lies often enough, that people are quoting them right and left, without fact-checking what they are saying.

Some of these glaring facts revolve around the AR-15 sporting rifle, which has come to the forefront of the debate once again. An AR-15 is no more deadly than any other semi-automatic rifle, and much less deadly than some. Yet it is constantly villanized by those on the left. Why? Because it looks scary.

Granted, the two latest mass shootings to gain the media’s attention both featured AR-15 rifles. The Las Vegas shooter used AR-15s, equipped with bump stocks to kill 58 and wound almost ten times that many. Likewise, the Sutherland Springs killer used an AR-15. But what the mainstream media is intentionally overlooking, is that the man who stopped the Sutherland Springs also used an AR-15 rifle.

While these two examples tend to paint the AR-15 in a bad light, statistically the AR-15 is rarely used in crimes. For that matter, rifles are rarely used in crimes. Most crimes involving firearms are committed using pistols, simply because a rifle is too bulky to carry around and conceal.

Yet it is the AR-15 that the left is consistently trying to make illegal. Why is that? I would have to say that only a part of that is its “scary” appearance. The rest of the reason is that staging a revolution requires rifles; you really can’t do it with just pistols.

If we look at gun control as part of the left’s total agenda, then getting rifles, especially semi-automatic rifles that are styled after military ones, out of the hands of ordinary, law-abiding citizens, makes sense.

Why Do We Need Our Guns?

I would contend that we need those rifles even more today than ever before. Not only do we need them for the original intent of the Second Amendment, that of protecting our country from enemies, both foreign and domestic, but also to protect ourselves and those around us.

My reasoning for this is that the threat of terrorism, especially Islamic terrorism is higher today than it has ever been before. Even though most of those terrorist attacks happen in other countries, we have seen a higher number of them here in the US, since the rise of ISIS. Now, with ISIS losing territory in the Middle East, they’re putting more effort into their terrorist operations. So we can expect to see more fanatical Muslims committing atrocities here at home.

While these terrorists have a plethora of weapons to choose from, the most popular weapons in the terrorist community are bombs and the AK-47 rifle. This is largely due to the ready availability of the AK-47 rifle, worldwide.

Here in the US they aren’t as common, but the AR-15 is. So, chances are, terrorists working in the United States will use AR-15s, just as they did in San Bernardino, California.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t relish the idea of going up against a terrorist armed with any rifle, with only a pistol in my hand. I’d do it if I had to, but I sure wouldn’t be happy about it. The advantage that rifle would give them would make it much riskier for me, greatly increasing my chances of dying in the exchange.

While I’m willing to take that risk, I’d rather minimize it as much as possible. Being a martyr trying to protect society really isn’t the way I want to go.

As part of ISIS’ increase in international terrorism, they’ve announced that they are going to be targeting Christian churches. So there’s a very good chance that we will be seeing an increased number of churches being attacked in the future.

It’s obvious why Muslim terrorists would target Christian churches. After all, ISIS has been targeting Christians in the Middle East. Today, there isn’t one single native Christian in Mosul, after being under the control of ISIS forces for three years. They sought out and killed every Christian, as part of their “holy war.” As they have throughout history, Muslims kill those who don’t convert to their religion.

But the mass killings which have happened in American churches in recent years haven’t been motivated by ISIS or any other terrorist organization.

Some have been racially oriented hate crimes and others fall into the same category as mass shootings in schools, theaters and other places where people congregate. Churches are targeted, because they seem like a place where people aren’t likely to be armed, a de facto “gun free zone,” whether they are legally one or not.

This idea of churches being a gun free zone makes sense, as guns and the violence that they are used to cause seems, on the surface, to be the opposite of what the church stands for.

But those of us who know the Holy Scriptures know that the right of self-defense was given by God, not by the government. What is known as the Castle Doctrine comes straight out of the Bible, in Exodus 22:2, where God says that those who kill in self-defense are not guilty of murder.

Part of the confusion comes from the most common translation of the Sixth Commandment as “Thou shalt not kill.” But in reality, the word that is translated in our Bibles as “kill” is really “murder” or “homicide.” There’s a very clear distinction between killing in self-defense and committing homicide.

I doubt that there are many killers who actually read the Bible, let alone become biblical scholars. So the prevailing idea that churches are gun free zones will prevail.

Some Christians will enforce this idea, being amongst the crowd of those who are afraid of guns. But as Democrats love to say about us conservatives, we stick to our Bibles and our guns. So, few Christians are likely to go along with the idea of disarming the church, just to appear more holy.

The Lighthouse Mexico Church of God, in Oswego, New York, a strongly liberal state, put it the best. Their church sign read “Locked and Loaded. We are not a gun free zone” in the wake of the Sutherland Springs shooting. Like other churches across the country, they are taking proactive steps to ensure that their congregation isn’t the next victim of a mass shooting.

Video first seen on Fox News.

Less than six weeks before the Sutherland Springs shooting, an armed gunman entered the Burnette Chapel Church of Christ, in Antioch, Tennessee, killing one woman and leaving six others wounded. This was apparently a racially-charged hate crime, done in retaliation to a similar crime in 2015.

Other than motive, the big difference between these two crimes was how they were stopped. In both cases, the killer’s reign of terror was put to an end by a good guy with a gun; something the left doesn’t want to admit exists.

But in Tennessee, the killer was confronted by armed church members, while in Texas, the killer wasn’t confronted until he walked out of the church sanctuary. Apparently, there was nobody in the congregation who was armed, a surprising turn of events for Texas.

What Are We Going to Do About This?

Most churches are like shooting fish in a barrel. Killers have a high concentration of targets in a small area. Even if they don’t aim well, chances are that their shots will hit someone.

There is little chance of many escaping their attention too, as the number of egress points is limited, especially in smaller churches. If the killer stands in the door of a small church, which is normally in the back of the sanctuary, there may not be any effective way to escape.

Larger churches have the advantage of space, as well as more exists the congregation can use. There are also more places to hide in a large church, offering that option. But the big advantage that large churches have is that of finances. They can afford to hire armed security personnel, many of whom are off-duty police officers.

Smaller churches, many of who are barely making it financially, can’t afford this option. But there are few churches in the country, which do not have gun owners in attendance. The big question is how many of those gun owners have concealed carry licenses, allowing them the legal right to bring their guns to church with them.

I’ll guarantee you this… there were more guns in American Churches this past Sunday, than there have ever been before. Christians are people of faith; but they are also practical people.

They don’t just cling to their Bibles and their guns because of some love for them, but because they recognize their need for guns and Bibles in their lives. Many Christians wouldn’t think of going to church without their Bibles, and now many Christians won’t think of going to church without their guns as well.

This is a change for the better. It reduces the options for potential mass murderers by one. I hope that adherents of other faiths follow suit. As a society, we won’t be able to get rid of these mass murderers, until we eliminate the venues that they use. That means having armed, trained people on hand, who are able to put a stop to the carnage.

It also means that churches need to put a plan together; one which allows the armed members of their congregations the opportunity to defend themselves and everyone around them. They will be more effective, if they can work together.

They will also be more effective if the congregation knows how to react, so as to not get in their way. One of the hardest things about defending a church or other crowded location from shooters is people running in fear, right into the line of fire.

The advice that is normally given in an active shooter situation is fairly good. Those options are to flee, hide or fight. If a church has armed members who are able to defend the congregation, they have the fight part under control. It’s up to everyone else to do the run or hide part.

But they have to do it in such a way as to not get in the way of those who are fighting. In many cases, the best thing that unarmed people can do is to get down on the floor, making themselves a small target and getting out of the way of those who are trying to defend them.

This is where many churches are likely to fall short. In an effort to not scare the congregation, they aren’t going to teach their people how to react to a shooting situation. Sadly, this means that they will actually be making things more dangerous for their congregants.

In my mind, it’s better to scare them a little, and ensure that their safety. This is the safest way to survive!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.com.

Survival On A Budget: Prepping When You Live On Social Security

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Let’s face it, prepping can get expensive. I don’t care who you are, unless you have a rather sizeable income, trying to be prepared to survive a disaster is going to take e sizeable chunk out of your budget; that is, unless you are extremely careful with your money and know how to make the most of it.

Most of us who call ourselves preppers aren’t wealthy. Oh, there are wealthy preppers; but for the most part, they’re the ones who are buying their survival retreats in New Zeeland or buying a private island.

While they may read some of the same materials you and I read, their idea of prepping is a whole lot different, simply because they can afford to do things that you and I can’t afford to do.

“I would like to see a web page or series  on “the Poor Prepper”.  I am on social security and have very limited funds.  I would like to know what to begin with and where I should put my priorities.  I would also be interested in what gives the greatest reward for the money.”

Survivopedia reader

What if you are on a limited income; what do you do then? Is it still possible to be a prepper, even if you’re living on Social Security or some other form of fixed income?

What do You Need?

To start with, we’ve got to understand what we need to have, in order to survive. Otherwise, it’s real easy to get caught up in thinking we have to have the latest survival gadget.

3 Second SEAL Test Will Tell You If You’ll Survive A SHTF Situation

Granted, some of those gadgets are nice, but you don’t necessarily need to have them, in order to survive.

The basic survival needs are:

  • Maintaining your body heat – You can die from hypothermia (loss of body heat) in less than 30 minutes.
  • Drink enough clean water – The human body uses water for a lot of things; so you can only go about 3 days without water. It has to be clean water too, as many harmful bacteria and other microorganisms can be found in unpurified water.
  • Have enough food – You can live about 30 days without food; longer if you’re overweight. But survival is going to tax your energy, meaning that you’ll burn more calories than you’re accustomed to.

To provide yourself with these three basic needs, as well as taking care of some other basics, you’ll also need:

  • To be able to start and maintain a fire – We use fire to keep warm, provide light, cook our food and can even use it to purify water.
  • Take care of our health – This means treating injuries, treating sickness and personal hygiene, which is necessary to prevent disease.
  • Defend ourselves – There are two-legged predators out there, who would like nothing more than to steal what you have, especially in a post-disaster situation.

These six areas are your priorities, so when you make decisions on what to stockpile and how to spend your money, keep them in mind. Your first priority should be to make sure that you can keep warm in the winter. Then that you have a means of purifying water, and then that you have food to eat. The other things come after that.

The Big Challenge, Stockpiling

While you can spend a whole lot of money on survival equipment, you don’t really have to. I’ll talk more about that in a minute. Your real area of expense is going to be in stockpiling supplies; especially food. But with some judicious buying, you can even do that on a tight budget.

The first thing we have to take into consideration is that this is survival, not normal living. That means that we have to be ready to give up a lot of things that we enjoy, for the sake of surviving. Many of the things we enjoy in life are actually luxuries, not necessities. We might convince ourselves they are necessities, but they are not.

When it comes to building any stockpile, it’s difficult to do it all at once. Rather, try to build a small stockpile and then make it grow gradually. In other words, start out by building a one-month stockpile. Once you have that, work on increasing it to two months. That two months can then be expanded to three; and on and on, until you get to a year, or whatever end point you have picked.

Working on a stockpile slowly allows you to make it a part of your budget, spending whatever you feel like you can afford on prepping. Even if this is only $5 a week, that’s probably more than your neighbors are investing in their future. Five dollars can go a long way, if you use it judiciously.

Building a stockpile slowly allows you to spread the expense over a longer period of time. While you may feel an imperative to do everything right now, that’s really not possible. Rather, work on making your prepping a part of your life, where you are doing it little by little. Remember, everything you do improves your chances of survival a little bit more. So even if you don’t reach all your goals this month, you should be better off at the end of the month, than you were at the beginning.

Stockpiling water shouldn’t cost you anything. You don’t have to buy bottled water to build a stockpile of water. Rather, use the tap water from your home, storing it in whatever containers you can find. Plastic milk jugs work extremely well; but if you don’t buy milk in plastic jugs, you can use just about any sort of closable container, jars, bottles and jugs.

There are many ways you can save on food. Start by taking advantage of sales and coupons, buying whatever you can use that you can get at a discounted rate. Buying in bulk helps with this too, as part of what you are paying for is always the packaging.  Just make sure that it is food which will keep for a prolonged period of time.

The most expensive part of building any food stockpile is protein, specifically animal protein. This is the big challenge for most of us. You can start by using other sources of protein, rather than animal protein. Beans are an excellent source of protein and are very inexpensive. So, beans need to become a part of your stockpile.

For the rest, your best deals are going to be buying canned meats. I’ve found some excellent deals on canned chicken, more than any other meat. You can also do extremely well with Spam, potted meat and Vienna sausage. While these may not be your favorites, they will provide you with the nutrition you need.

Make Your Own

One of the best ways of saving money is by doing things yourself, rather than paying someone else to do it for you. I’ve made a lot of my own survival gear, from solar panels to knives, even firearms. This has saved me a lot of money, freeing up that money for other needs. If you’re on Social Security, you obviously have time, so why not use some of that time to make your own survival gear.

Probably the best way of using that time to help you with prepping is to grow a huge vegetable garden and can the produce you grow. I imagine that once a major disaster hits and society breaks down, we’re all going to be doing a lot of gardening. Better to get a head-start on it and preserve some of that food for a time of need.

Make Use of Garage Sales

You can actually find a variety of different survival supplies at local garage sales, if you take the time to look. While you won’t be able to find everything, there are some key items that you are probably going to be able to get a great deal on, at one garage sale or another.

  • Candles – Candles are a time-honored source of light, which people have used for centuries. But buying candles in the store today can be a bit expensive. So instead, buy them at garage sales. I find candles there all the time. They can either be used as-is or melted down and remade into more practical survival candles.
  • Rugged Clothing – When you’re in survival mode, you’re going to be much harder on your clothes than you normally are. Make sure that you have a good supply of rugged “work clothes,” including some good hiking or work boots.
  • Canning Supplies – Canning is one of the easiest forms of food preservation to learn; and it’s extremely secure. If you are going to try your hand at gardening for food, something we all should do, then you’re going to need canning jars. Don’t pay full price for them; you can always find canning jars at garage sales.
  • Blankets – If you’re going to be heating with wood, then you may find that you have trouble getting your home as warm as you would like. The way our ancestors handled that was to pile lots of blankets on the bed. Extra blankets can also be put over windows, to act as insulation and help keep your home warmer.
  • Food – Yes, you can actually find food at garage sales, believe it or not. Often, this will be bulk food, which is ideal for your prepping needs.
  • Gardening Supplies – From pots to plants to tools, you can find all sorts of gardening supplies at garage sales, usually from people who have given up.
  • Hunting and Fishing Gear – It’s not uncommon to find camouflage gear or fishing poles at garage sales; ones that people either outgrew or replace with newer ones. That’s fine, you can use them.

For much of my life I was way down there on the income curve. Working as a missionary doesn’t exactly bring in a huge income. Yet even though we didn’t have much, we still managed to prepare for Y2K and other disasters. How did we do it? Following the steps that I’ve just mentioned.

Take them one by one and be ready to make the most out of anything. This is what real survival is all about!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

A Fresh Spate Of Killings. The Look Beyond

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Arguments have gone back and forth about whether mass killings are on the rise or not. A lot depends on how you define a mass killing. Leftists use more liberal definition (of course), allowing them to qualify more killings as “mass killings” or “mass shootings” than what the FBI uses.

Based upon the FBI’s definition, there isn’t any rise, but based upon the leftist definition, there is.

But there’s should be no question in anyone’s mind about the last week. Three mass killings in one week is way too much for any nation, even one as large as ours is. First there was the terrorist attack in Manhattan, where a supposed ISIS supporter drove a truck down a bike path, killing and maiming in his wake.

Then there was a shooter in the Denver Metro area, who entered a Wal-Mart and shot three people, before making his escape. Finally, there was the Sunday shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas, leaving 26 dead and about 20 others wounded. All this, just a month after the Las Vegas shooting.

The Texas shooting is still a breaking story, as I sit here writing this. Little is known, other than the name of the shooter and a few other details. Motive, the most important thing for the investigators to try to uncover, is still at doubt. But it is interesting to note that the church he attacked was attended by his ex-wife and her family.

Devin Patrick Kelly, the Texas shooter, apparently has a history of violence, having been court-martialed for domestic violence in 2012; a crime that led to his incarceration, loss of military rank and a bad conduct discharge, as well as his wife divorcing him. This raises the questions, could this have been nothing more than a grudge killing?

Obviously, more details will come out as time goes on and the investigators look further into his life. One glaring fact stands out right now; that is, because of his history with violence, he should not have been able to buy a firearm legally. Yet somehow he did.

The Flaw in the System

One of the first things that investigators track down in a case of this type is where the murder weapon was purchased. In this case, the gun he used, an AR-15, was purchased over the counter in an Academy Sporting Goods store in the city of San Antonio.

Having bought firearms in an Academy store before, I can assure you that they follow the law explicitly when selling firearms. So what went wrong?

There are three basic steps required for buying a firearm in the United States.

The first is filling out an ATF form 4473, Firearms Transaction Record. There are several questions asked on this form, mostly involving things that would deny one the right to purchase a firearm. Obviously, the killer in this case lied on that form, or he wouldn’t have been able to make the purchase. But then, there’s really nothing to stop people from lying on such forms, any more than there is to keep them from lying on their taxes.

The second required step is to prove that you are who you say you are. This is easily accomplished by presenting a driver’s license, or other acceptable form of picture ID, preferably a government-issued one. Obviously, he was able to do that.

Finally, the seller has to contact NICS, the National Instant Criminal Background Check system, a sub-agency of the FBI. This computerized database is supposed to have records of all crimes committed by anyone in the country. Since he had assaulted his wife and child in 2012, there should have been records of that in the database, denying him the ability to buy the gun he used in the crime. Yet, somehow, he did.

Adding a touch of confusion to the case, Kelley was denied a Texas Concealed Handgun Permit, which would make it seem that he couldn’t pass the NICS background check. However, the background check for the Concealed Handgun Permit is much more extensive than that for purchasing a firearm. So it is possible that the NICS database didn’t have all the data that was used in the Texas Concealed Handgun Permit background check.

This brings to light a major flaw in the background check system that is currently in use. The “loophole” in the system isn’t the non-existent “gun show loophole” that gun grabbers love to talk about. Rather, it’s the loophole created by the simple fact that not all the information seems to make it into the NICS database.

Here we have a man who was convicted of two counts of assault in a military court-martial and served time incarcerated for it. Yet that felony didn’t keep him from buying a firearm, even though it should have. We don’t need more gun laws; we need the ones on the books to be enforced.

One of the problems with the system is that there is no federal law requiring that states send mental-health information to the NICS, only state laws; and those only exist in 38 states. Even then, the states only send records on those who have been judged to have mental health issues in a court of law. Most people with mental health issues don’t end up there.

Some are calling for doctors to be able to make that judgment call, without a court order. But that denies people the right of to defend themselves before the judge’s bench. If a doctor can claim that someone is mentally incapable of owning a firearm, then anti-gun doctors could literally say that of all their patients, without the patients having any recourse.

But while there is a mental health element to this particular shooting, that’s not the big concern; at least, not as far as him buying a firearm. His conviction for assault should have been enough for that. Does this mean that there are crimes committed in the military, which are not being reported to NICS?

For that matter, how many federal cases, state courts and municipalities are really reporting all crimes to NICS? I would venture to guess that there are a lot. If that’s the case, there are massive holes in the system, holes that are making it possible for criminals to legally buy firearms, just as we see in this case.

But with no penalty to states or municipalities for not reporting, there is no way to enforce this law.

Is This Like Other Mass Shootings?

The motivation behind the killing isn’t just of interest to investigators, but to all of us. Is this another mass shooting, in the style of Sandy Hook and Columbine? Is it a terrorist incident like San Bernardino? Or, could there be another motive behind the shooter’s actions?

Until investigators uncover the motive behind the killer’s rampage, there is no chance of learning anything to help prevent any future such incidents.

While little is known at this time, first indicator fit the model of other mass killings. The killer has been described as “creepy,” “crazy,” “weird,” “negative,” “quiet” and “depressed.” He was also an avowed atheist, which may have something to do with his choice of targets. All of this lends credence to the possibility of some sort of mental disorder; although no real evidence has been brought to light, other than anecdotal evidence, to show any true mental disorder.

The other thing that appears to follow the pattern of other mass shooters was his obvious preparation. While it is still very early in the investigation to have any idea of how long he has been planning this killing spree, he bought his rifle back in 2014, three years ago. Could he have been thinking of this for that long?

Even if he didn’t, this clearly wasn’t a spur of the moment action. He showed up at his target area in full tactical gear, including a ballistic vest. That alone shows that he took the time to prepare. He clearly went to that church with the intent of committing mass murder and didn’t want to be stopped before he could complete his objective.

This has led investigators to look into the possibility of Kelley being a member of a local militia group. Most militia groups are conservative, although since Trump became president, there have been some liberal ones that have risen up.

I would not be surprised if the investigative team finds extensive evidence in Kelley’s home, showing how he had planned this crime. That would follow the pattern of other mass killers and show that this crime was more than one of passion, but rather another such crime caused by mental illness.

A Good Guy with a Gun

A common trait of mass shootings is that the killer ends their own life, as the culmination of their act. The exception to this rule is when someone else ends it for them.

Video first seen on BP Network.

In this case, the shooting spree was ended by a good guy with a gun, a local resident, who heard the shooting and engaged the shooter with his own rifle, hitting him in the side, through a gap in his body armor.

This caused Kelley to drop his rifle and take off in his SUV, with the man who shot him and another man in pursuit. Whether this was necessary or not is yet to be determined, as the killer ran his vehicle off the road, hitting a tree. When police arrived, they found him dead.

Whether the killer was finally done in by his own bullet, by the bullet fired by the local hero or by the police is something that we won’t know until the autopsy is completed. But one thing is clear; as horrific as this crime was, it could have been worse, if it had not been for a good guy with a gun.

While leftists won’t admit it, guns are used to stop crimes hundreds of thousands, or maybe even millions of times per year. One study puts the figure at 2.5 million. Statistics for this are hard to collate, simply because most of the time when an individual uses a gun in self-defense, it doesn’t get reported.

There is no requirement to report a crime that didn’t happen, and 70% of the time that lawful gun owners draw a gun in the face of a criminal, that’s enough to cause the criminal to flee.

So, What Can We Do?

Ultimately, the big question for all of us is: How can we stop gun crime?

Those on the political left want to blame the crime on guns, outlawing them. They want to eliminate guns entirely and if they can’t eliminate as many as they can. But unless they can find a way to repeal the physical laws that make guns work, they can’t eliminate them. All they can do by passing laws is make it harder for law-abiding citizens to defend themselves.

But as long as there are evil people in the world, there will be crime, even violent crime. The earliest recorded crime in human history was when Cain killed his brother Abel, and he didn’t need a gun to do it. So until we can eliminate all problems with human morality (which is obviously impossible), people will continue to kill, maim and otherwise harm each other.

What we can do is to quit sensationalizing murder… or rather, the news media can. Mass killers are looking for their moment of glory, as a way to end their otherwise unremarkable lives. Going down in infamy may not be the best option, but in their minds, it’s better than ending their lives as an unknown.

There is also a strong mental illness factor in mass murder, which has never been dealt with effectively. Over and over we hear of these cases, only to find that the murderers were either on psychosomatic drugs or should have been. That alone should be enough to legally deny them their rights to own firearms, by court order. Yet it isn’t happening.

As a society, we need to figure out a better way of diagnosing and treating those with these sorts of mental illnesses. That part has to be done by medical professionals. But we also need to make the general population aware of who these people are, regardless of any privacy laws. We currently deny this right of privacy to sex offenders and I really can’t see a whole lot of difference.

Will we ever be totally successful in diagnosing and treating the mental illness behind mass murder? I doubt it. But we can and should do a much better job than what we are doing now. It’s time for Congress to take action, not to eliminate our Second Amendment rights, but to make these mental health issues a priority and fund them appropriately.

The Real Answer

But the real answer is the one I mentioned earlier… the good guys with a gun. While I hope to never have to kill one of these mass murderers, I live every day as if I have to be ready to do so. I carry concealed from the time I get dressed in the morning, to the time I go to bed at night, even at church.

Sunday, before hearing about the Sutherland Springs shooting, I was talking with a member of our church, a retired police officer, who has a concealed carry license. Although he is licensed and was a firearms instructor while in the police department, his gun was in his car. So had this event happened in our church, he would not have been able to help.

There are four of us who carry concealed in our church, and I can guarantee you we will be meeting together to discuss strategy, should such a thing ever happen in our church. While I realize the likelihood of that is slim, I also realize that it is not impossible. So we will be ready, should it ever occur.

Ultimately, our safety is in our own hands. If you don’t carry concealed, I’d like to recommend you start. Get your license, go to the range and practice, and be ready, should this ever happen to you.

While I would rather not have to kill a killer in my church, neighborhood store or anywhere else, I’d rather be part of the solution, than just stand their wondering if I’m going to become a statistic instead!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Refernces:

http://www.abc15.com/news/data/mass-shootings-in-the-u-s-over-270-mass-shootings-have-occurred-in-2017

http://www.shootingtracker.com/

These Are The Best Survival Businesses To Start Off-Grid

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As the rhetoric between Washington and Pyongyang has heated up, so has the risk to the United States. Recent missile and nuclear tests by the North Korean regime have made it clear that they are closer to their long-stated goal of attacking the United States than ever.

After their sixth nuclear test, in which they exploded what was supposed to be a two-stage hydrogen bomb, the North Korean news agency started talking about an EMP (electromagnetic pulse) attack against the United States for the first time.

What’s next for us? A totally off-grid world, where the survival of the fittest would become effective?

In a way, it’s surprising it’s taken them this long, considering how long I and others have been warning about that possibility.

Any county that is smart enough to develop nuclear bombs and intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) has to have people in their war plans department who are aware of how effective an EMP is and who would be punching the numbers to figure out how to use their nuclear arsenal in that regard.

An EMP attack doesn’t preclude the possibility of conventional nuclear war and we shouldn’t assume that it will. Regardless of the flaming rhetoric coming out of Kim Jong-un and his Secretary of State, they have to realize that they can’t win a nuclear exchange with the United States.

No matter how effective they are, we have way more nukes than they do.

Here’s Why We Can Never Win This War!

Even if they are able to take out Washington, a few other major cities and our entire electrical grid in one coordinated attack, we have more than enough nuclear missiles in submarines and nuclear bombs on aircraft carriers to turn their entire country into a parking lot.

But don’t think that will deter them from this course of action. This is a grudge match for them, wanting to get even with us for the first Korean War.

Based on that grudge, the North Korean government is bent on destruction and the people of that small country are willing to die in support of their leadership. If anything, that increases the likelihood for a combined EMP and conventional nuclear attack. They want to punish us and they want to punish us good.

Should that happen, our chances of surviving the attack unscathed are minimal. While we do have some anti-ICBM defense, there aren’t enough, especially not for a southern approach. So, the best we can hope for is that North Korea destroys a few cities; the worst is an effective EMP.

That’s the scenario we have to prepare for; an EMP taking out our electrical grid and turning the clock back 150 years or so, technologically speaking. The possibility of us surviving any sort of nuclear exchange, unscathed, is minimal.

The Worst Scenario

This is the worst possible scenario we face today; and it is not one that we can ignore. While I will be absolutely thrilled if our missile defenses are able to neutralize such an attack, I don’t believe that it is something we can count on.

With that being the case, you and I need to be ready to survive in a post-EMP world; one in which we don’t have electrical power; one which most people are unprepared to live in. According to the reports of the EMP Commission, as much as 90% of the US population will die of starvation. That sort of world. Somehow, we’re not only going to have to survive in it, but rebuild as much of our lives as we can.

This is why we are preppers; in order to ensure our family’s survival in the case of such an event. Everything we do is ultimately for this reason. But that isn’t enough. If all we do is ensure our own survival, what about our kids? Our grandkids? The human race in general.

That’s why it’s going to be important to be able to rebuild as much of society as possible. Then, and only then, will we be able to guarantee the survival of our children and grandchildren. That’s going to require the right sorts of skills, many of which aren’t common today.

Fortunately, there is still time. So if you don’t already have the right sorts of skills, you could at least try to learn some of them. There’s no way that anyone could possibly learn all of them, but the more that you can learn, the more valuable you will be in that post-EMP world. Perhaps you could be valuable enough that others would help to guarantee your survival and that of your family.

Of course, you’ll want to get something for your skills. That means turning those skills into some sort of business; a business where you can produce a product or provide a service to people who will be struggling to survive and rebuild their lives.

Valuable Businesses in a Post-EMP World

Any business you attempt to build for that post-EMP world will have to operate under the assumption that you won’t have any electrical power available to you, other than that which you produce yourself.

So, one of the things you may want to consider, as part of starting your off-grid business, is making sure that you can produce enough electricity to meet your basic needs, both in your home and in your business.

Other than that, plan on using hand tools, rather than electric ones. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that you should make or buy the necessary tools now, because you probably won’t be able to find them when the time comes. Besides, getting them now gives you the chance to learn how to use them effectively.

Growing Food

The biggest need that most people will have is for food. According to the EMP commission’s report, the vast majority of the people who will die after an EMP, will do so from starvation. The vast majority of the farms in our country are owned by giant corporations and grow food (mostly grain) in bulk.

Without fuel for the farm machinery, those farms won’t be able to operate. Without fuel for trucks, that food can’t be hauled to processing plants. Without electricity to run the plants, the raw food can’t be turned into packaged foods.

All food production will have to be local. Local farmers will do well, assuming they can get fuel for their tractors and combines. That will be the problem.

Likewise, local ranchers and shepherds will find themselves sitting on a goldmine, with people needing the food that they can produce. The ability to grow food may very well be necessary for your family’s survival. Growing more than you need will give you the opportunity to trade food for other essentials.

Charging Batteries

As a society, we are addicted to our electronics. While most of those will be destroyed, there is a good chance that small portable electronics will survive if protected in a Faraday cage. These will become like gold, as people try to cling to the pre-EMP past.

If you are putting in alternate energy for your home anyway, you could offer battery charging services to friends and neighbors. Solar panels will actually survive an EMP, with a loss of only 5 to 10 percent of their efficiency. However, the solar charge controller and voltage inverter for your system will probably be fried by the EMP; so make sure you have a spare.

Herbal Medicine

The current pharmaceutical industry will collapse, as will many other industries. This means that the only medicines any community will have will be those in people’s homes and in local pharmacies. When those run out, there won’t be any replacements.

However, modern medicine is an outgrowth of herbal medicine. Quite literally, all medicines started out as plant products. Big Pharma has synthesized the chemicals found in those plants, in order to make medicines which they could patent and sell.

Knowing which plants offer which medicinal properties and growing those plants could allow you to open up a post-EMP natural pharmacy, providing medicines to your local community.

Of course, you’ll need to educate the doctors, some of who will resent you. But the truly smart ones, who care about their patients, will take knowledge wherever they can get it.

Blacksmithing

Before the industrial revelation took over from them, most metal products were the handicrafts of some blacksmith. They made everything from tools to nails, with andirons in between. But they were one of the earliest casualties of the industrial revolution. Factories took over much of what they made and then cars took over from horses, eliminating the need for shoeing.

While there will be many tools and other metal objects laying around in the post-EMP world, there won’t be the old kinds of tools that people need for working with their hands. Blacksmiths may very well find themselves in a crucial place once again, helping to rebuild society.

Building Trades

While the EMP itself won’t damage homes, factories, stores and other businesses, it will make some drastic changes to society. People will find themselves needing to build outbuildings behind their homes, for their home-based business.

Others will need to change their plumbing, so that it will work off a well. There will always be a need for the building trades.

Taking this a step further, linemen for the phone or electric company will probably find gainful employment trying to put together local phone systems, build small hydroelectric dams and otherwise help rebuild society.

The skills these people have will become an important part of rebuilding.

Practical Engineering

When I say “practical engineering” I’m not talking about someone who can design a computer chip, but rather someone who can design simple devices, of the type that we will need to have, in order to rebuild our lives. Designing a loom for weaving fabric will be important, designing a computer won’t.

These people may not even be working as engineers right now, or might be considered technicians in business and industry. But they know how to put things together that will work. If we are going to have to rebuild turbines to create power, we’ll need people who can do the job from the ground up, starting by melting down the copper and drawing wire.

Another important characteristic of the type of engineer I’m talking about is the ability to repurpose items and turn them into something useful. Without gasoline, we won’t have much use for cars and trucks, but the axle from that truck might be very useful in building a wagon. That’s the sort of engineering we’re going to need.

Mechanics

While most vehicles will be off the road, due to a shortage of gasoline, there will be some that are running. We will need mechanics not only to fix those vehicles, but to find ways of making others run, ways of modifying engines so that alternate fuels can be burned, and taking engines out of cars to be used as power sources for other things.

Good mechanics, especially good shade-tree mechanics, understand the engines they work on, better than the engineers that designed them. This knowledge gives them the ability to modify those engines in a number of ways, such as increasing the power they produce.

I’m betting that if we get mobile after the attack, it will be because of mechanics that come up with some breakthrough new ways to use the internal combustion engine.

Making Bio-Diesel & Methane

Two of the most promising fuels sources in a post-EMP world would be bio-diesel and methane gas. While there are few cars on the roads today which burn these fuels, it is possible to modify some engines to burn them.

As these two fuels are some of the easiest to produce, requiring the least amount of equipment, this could very well turn into an effective business.

General Repairs

Like mechanics, people who can repair other things will have a ready business in a post-EMP world. There will be a need for repairing just about anything, as the factories will be closed and production will come to a standstill. All we will have is what we have at the moment the attack happens.

These people will also be likely to be the ones who work together with the practical engineers to create new things or reinvent old ones. In many cases, the materials to make those tools and equipment will come from cannibalizing existing machinery, appliances and other things that no longer work. Gears and pulleys don’t care what they’re working in, they’ll still do the job.

Gunsmithing

It is widely believed that a post-EMP world will be violent, due to a breakdown of society. As such, people will need their guns, and those guns will probably get a lot more use than they do today. Guns that get used stand a chance of getting broke. Hence, the need for good gunsmiths.

For that matter, the ability to make ammunition will probably become a high priority, especially with people trying to hunt for food. Anyone with a reloading press and the appropriate dies could have a ready-made business, without any further investment.

Make Sure You’re Prepared!

Most of the businesses I’ve mentioned will require some sort of materials and supplies. Gunsmiths won’t be able to go online and order gun parts, nor will blacksmiths be able to pick up steel at their local steel supply. In both cases, the craftsmen will either need to make their own materials or find a way of reusing materials that currently exist.

Don’t count on local warehouses having what you need either. They’ll probably have enough at the beginning, but those supplies will eventually run out. When that happens, you’ll need to have a Plan B that you can put into effect. That plan may require you making things yourself.

What I’m trying to say here is that you need to think through thoroughly any off-grid business that you try to create. Don’t think of it in terms of today’s world, but in a world where you won’t be able to just buy the parts and materials you need. How will you get them? Can you scavange? Can you find the raw materials in nature? Can you repurpose old stuff, melting it down to make new stuff again?

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

9 Ways To Compromise Your Survival Stockpile

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There are a lot of foolish people in the world today. Sadly, we even find some of them amongst the ranks of preppers. These people are doing what they need to do, in order to be ready for a disaster, but they’re not necessarily doing it right. In many cases, they are letting others know what they are doing, or they are doing it in such a way as to not protect their preps.

This became eminently clear to me in the recent spate of hurricanes we’ve had.

While I don’t know any preppers who were caught in those hurricanes, simply examining the devastation caused by them, as part of my typical post-disaster review, showed me a number of weaknesses that could apply to just about anyone’s survival stockpile.

But we don’t need a disaster to show up, in order for us to find that we’ve made some major mistakes in how we stockpile for an emergency. Some of these mistakes can show up long before a disaster does.

3 Second SEAL Test Will Tell You If You’ll Survive A SHTF Situation

A neighbor dropping by or an accident causing supplies to be destroyed is not all that uncommon. So let’s look at the various mistakes that many people make, in order to ensure that we don’t fall into the trap of becoming foolish preppers ourselves.

Poor OPSEC

The first and most obvious mistake that many people make is poor OPSEC (operational security). More than anything, this means not hiding what they’re doing from friends and neighbors. This requires actively thinking about how you will keep people from knowing what you are doing, rather than just thinking they won’t know, if you don’t tell them.

I guarantee that if you show up at your home some afternoon, with a truckload of food that you picked up at Costco, your neighbors will see it and be curious. Even if they never ask you about it, they’ll remember that you buy things in bulk, so when things go bad and they need food, you’ll be the first one they’ll think of.

Hiding things from neighbors can be very difficult, simply because people are curious and they see what’s going on around them. If you have a vegetable garden, they know; likewise for a swimming pool.

Even if they aren’t thinking in terms of disaster preparedness, they will remember that those resources are in your backyard. They might even try to tell you that your swimming pool is a great source of water and isn’t it fortunate for the neighborhood that you have it.

The best you can do sometimes is to disguise what you are doing or mislead them as to why you are doing it. My neighbors know that I have a wind turbine and solar panels. Those are rather hard to find. But they also know that I’m a retired engineer, who likes to tinker around in my workshop. So, they see those things as signs of my tinkering, nothing more.

Of course, when the power goes out, they might show up at my door with a cell phone to be charged, but at least I’ve made it harder for them to realize what I’m really doing.

Storing Everything in One Place

If you lived in Southwest Houston when Hurricane Harvey hit and had all your prepping supplies in your home, they would all have been waterlogged by the flooding that the hurricane caused. The same sorts of things can happen with just about any type of natural disaster, from fires to earthquakes.

You should always have multiple caches of supplies, so that if your main stockpile becomes compromised in some way, you’ll at least have something to use.

Likewise, you shouldn’t keep your whole stockpile in one place in your home. Rather, spread it out some, so that if part of your home becomes damaged in a disaster, you’ll still have supplies in other parts of your home. This could also protect you if the government starts going door to door collecting things.

Some types of supplies should be spread around for safety as well. If your firewood stockpile is all in one place, then a fire could destroy it all. Likewise, if you’re storing gasoline. Not only that; but in both of those cases, destruction of the stockpile would also endanger your home and family.

Not Ensuring it is Ready for Long-Term Storage

You have to assume that anything you’re storing is going to be in storage for 20 years. While it may not be, making that assumption will help you to avoid making the mistake of not packaging it correctly for long-term storage.

MRE’s, freeze dried, and dehydrated foods have a “maximum shelf life of 25 years.” Are these claims a load of B.S.? Frankly, it’s a yes and a no…  The claims of 25-year shel…

We usually think of food when we are saying this, but it doesn’t just apply to food. Some things, like gasoline, don’t store well. Storing a 55 gallon drum of gasoline isn’t going to do you much good, if that drum of gas goes bad or evaporates due to a poor seal. You need to add the necessary additives and make sure that the container is well sealed.

Another simple, but critical part of packaging for long-term storage is labeling. Adhesive labels don’t necessary stick for 20 years. In fact, many will fall off in a year or less, especially if the item is stored in a hot or humid area. In those cases, you need to make sure that you’re not using a label, but rather writing the contents directly on the container with a permanent marker.

Forgetting to Waterproof

Perhaps the most obvious thing I saw from these hurricanes was the need to waterproof everything. What good is a year’s worth of toilet paper going to do you, if it ends up soaked in water? While much of our food stockpile is already in waterproof containers, much of our other supplies aren’t. What can you do to make sure that they are properly waterproofed to protect them?

One of the hardest areas to do this is with a pile of firewood. I’ve got a couple of cords of split firewood in my backyards, stacked in racks. But if it flooded here, that wood would certainly get wet. For that matter, it’s not even well protected from the rain.

There’s no practical way I can protect all that firewood from the rain or from flooding. But I can take a small quantity of it, say enough for a few days, and store it inside, where it will be protected. If there is flooding and the power goes out, I can then start a fire and stack some of the wet wood near it to dry off.

Leaving Out a Critical Item

There’s always something you forget to stockpile, I don’t care how long you’ve been at it. I recently realized that I don’t have a boat; any sort of boat. Granted, I don’t have much need for a boat, and I have much better things to spend my money on. But I also live in a hurricane zone. So without a boat, I’d end up just like all those other people, sitting on my roof, waiting for someone who has a boat to come by and rescue me. Duh!

This is easily resolved, without spending a fortune. All I need to do is buy an inflatable rubber raft. You can find those for as little as $100, allowing you to have the means of rescuing yourself, rather than waiting for others to do it for you.

Always be reviewing your stockpile, looking for that critical missing item. You might be surprised when you find out what it is.

Not Protecting from Heat and Cold

Many things are damaged by heat, cold and dampness. Yet the places we tend to put our stockpiles in are either hot, cold or damp. Not a real good combination. We need to think our storage plans thoroughly, taking into consideration the effects of heat, cold and dampness over a long period of time.

Dampness can cause mold and mildew to grow on things, even things like that rubber raft I was just talking about. Should that happen, it would be a very unpleasant ride out on that raft. But heat can damage it as well, if I were to store it in my attic.

So the basement isn’t a good place to store it, nor is the attic. I need someplace where I can put it, like the garage, where it won’t be damaged by environmental consideration.

Leaving Your Stockpile Unguarded

Probably one of the worst things you can do is to leave a stockpile of supplies somewhere that others can get to it. I think of this, every time I talk about a survival retreat in the woods. Like many, I’d love to have that retreat; but I haven’t been able to afford it yet.

Leaving six months worth of food in a cabin in the woods, so that you’ll have it there if you have to bug out, sounds like a great idea. But cabins in the woods can usually be broken into fairly easily. If that were to happen, you might show up at your survival retreat, only to find a pile of empty packages, left behind by some bum that was squatting in your cabin.

Ideally, you’ll have your supplies someplace where you can keep an eye on it. But if you can’t make sure it is extra-secure. If it were me, I’d move a shipping container onto the property, parking it next to or behind my cabin. Rather than stocking my supplies in the cabin, it’d stock them in the container, ready at hand, but well secured against theft.

Prepping in the Wrong Place

This one’s a bit controversial, but I don’t think that everyone should build their survival stockpile in their home. While I’m a big proponent of bugging in, rather than bugging out, especially for those in the suburbs, rural towns and out in the country, I also recognize that not everyone should bug in.

If you live in the inner city, especially in an apartment building in the inner city, you should probably get out of there fairly quickly before society can break down. No matter how many supplies you have stockpiled, you won’t have enough water. What water exists will not meet the needs of everyone there and there is no way that you will be able to harvest water and protect it from being stolen by others.

For people in this sort of situation, I highly recommend finding a survival retreat in the suburbs or some rural town. That’s where they should build their stockpile. That way, they can escape from the dangers of the city and get to a place where it will be much easier to survive.

Not Checking Your Stockpile Regularly

Whatever you have stockpiled, whether it is food, ammunition, gasoline or firewood, you should check your supplies regularly. Things left alone tend to deteriorate and you have to assume that your stockpiled supplies can do so as well. Checking them regularly will protect you from the bad surprise of going to look for something and finding that it’s not usable.

One way to avoid this problem is to rotate your stock, buying new things and using up the old. Some food items are best stockpiled in this way, as they really don’t keep well for more than a year. Gasoline is another thing that should be rotated, as the shelf life of gas is only about six months.

By checking your stockpile regularly, say once a month or so, you can find things that are not packaged well enough or that need to be replaced. That way, you can make use of those items, rather than having them go to waste. You’ve got too much money invested in your stockpile, to just have things go bad on you. Better to use it and replace it, so that the money isn’t wasted.

Checking your stockpile also allows you to check for security problems with things that are stored off-site. As with the survival retreat I was talking about a moment ago, you want to make sure that the supplies that you have cached in other locations are safe from thieves and from destruction.

Now check your stockpile again and be honest: how many of these mistake do you make?

Would you stockpile be good enough to help you and your family survive?

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Should We Fear This Latest Rant?

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Ever since Donald Trump was elected president, the political left has been in a collective tizzy fit. Howls of outrage have resonated across the land, as each self-proclaimed activist has tried to outdo the next in the fury and outlandishness of their rhetoric.

Many of the demonstrations we are seeing the media focus on, like the NFL taking a knee and “civil rights” groups calling for the tearing down of statues, are nothing more than an expression of this collective outrage.

The consensus of the left seems to be that if they can’t beat us in the polls, they’ll beat us on the streets. They are living in a circular argument, where they tell themselves they are the majority and then are publicly outraged, garnering the attention of the media.

That attention proves to them that they are the majority, based on the faulty logic that there aren’t similar stories about those of us on the right. You’ll never see normal conservatives tearing down a statue of Martin Luther King Jr. That’s just not the way we work. But even if we would, you wouldn’t find the media reporting it in the same way.

Since the media is about the most liberal part of society, when they report on what leftists do, they give it a positive slant. They’ll either present it in a positive light, or they’ll ignore it altogether.

Yet in the midst of ignoring truly dangerous actions on those on the left, the media has no qualms about slandering anyone on the right, even if they have to make up a false story to do so. Nor do they have an problem tarring us all with the same brush, calling anyone who isn’t on the left by every name in the book.

In a very real way, the mainstream media is fueling the fires of hatred in this country. They’re also fueling the fear of those on the left. Rather than leaving fear-mongering to those who are on the fringes, fear-mongering has become mainstream. It is being used to manipulate the masses and create unrest.

Read or watch anything that is produced specifically for those on the left and you’ll find that fear-mongering going on. It is a tool they use very effectively, for the purpose of rallying the masses behind their banner. Keep the people afraid of what those nasty, hateful conservatives might do, and you can keep them in your pocket and voting for Democrats no matter what.

When Fear Becomes Dangerous

But this fear may manifest into something much uglier than the demonstrations and civil unrest we’ve seen to date. Ever since Donald Trump won the presidential election in 2016, the left has been arming themselves. While this still isn’t a widespread phenomenon, it is becoming much more common.

I have nothing against any law-abiding citizen of this country exercising their Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms, regardless of their political beliefs. After the Pulse massacre earlier in 2017, some conservative gun groups even started reaching out to the LGBT community, offering them shooting and self-defense lessons. This was accepted with both gladness and surprise, as the members of that community have been told that conservatives hate them.

But, as you and I know, those of us on the right don’t hate people, even if we disagree with them. Besides, these people obviously need to be able to defend themselves, just like the rest of us do.

Traditionally, guns have been in the hands of conservatives, with liberals crying and pulling out their hair to enact “sensible” gun control laws. Of course, sensible in their minds and sensible in the minds of those of us who own guns are two different things.

This is Why Conventional Preparedness Wisdom is Deadly!

To them, sensible is denying us our Second Amendment rights, in the name of “safety.” To us, it’s denying guns to criminals, which there are already laws on the books to do. All that needs to happen is for the government to start seriously prosecuting those who break those laws. Not enough of that happens, especially for straw purchases.

Leftist Militant Groups Arming Themselves

While there is nothing wrong with those on the political left exercising their Second Amendment rights, any more than any other American citizen, this seems to be extending beyond peaceful law-abiding citizens… not with criminals, but amongst the social justice warriors.

Word is coming out that militant groups, such as Antifa and Black Lives Matter are also arming themselves, as well as giving their members lessons in “self-defense.” But what do they mean by self-defense?

We’ve already seen, on multiple occasions, how violent these groups can be. Images from Ferguson and Baltimore are still all over the internet, as well as a score of other similar “demonstrations” that turned ugly. The violence at the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville was started by Antifa, even though there were a number of the white supremacist protesters who were armed.

These people, like others on the left, equate what they consider to be “hate speech” with violence. So they respond to anything they see as hateful with violent acts. The problem is, according to pretty much anyone on the left, all it takes for something to be considered hate speech is for it to be in disagreement with the left’s groupthink. In other words, any conservative opinion is hate speech and should be responded to with violence.

It’s bad enough when these people respond with their fists, rocks and sticks. They’ve put too may people in the hospital already, without using firearms. So what’s going to happen when they decide to ramp it up a bit, and use guns to express their outrage, rather than fists?

Owning and carrying a gun is a grave responsibility. I know men who won’t carry, simply because they don’t trust their own temper. They don’t want to put themselves at risk of acting irrationally with a gun, so they make sure that they can’t. I applaud them for their responsibility.

But what about these groups who have already shown their irresponsibility? What’s going to happen when they are armed and trained? Will they operate with the same restraint? Or will we start to see demonstrations like Ferguson turn even uglier? The risk we face from that is growing by the day.

Yet at the same time, we can’t take those people’s Second Amendment rights away from them, without just cause.

For us to take their guns away from them, simply because we suspect that they will use them inappropriately, is no different than them wanting to take ours away, because they think that we’re going to use them inappropriately. Until someone proves themselves to be a criminal, our laws require that they be presumed to be innocent.

Is a War Breaking Out?

The big risk here isn’t just that militant leftist groups arm themselves, or even that they use those arms in the midst of other violent acts. No, the big risk is that such an act break out into a full-scale battle.

With as many gun owners as there are in the United States and as many of us who are carrying concealed, chances are that any time that these militant groups would start shooting, someone would be there to respond.

This is rightly the job of the police, not you and I. Conservative gun owners and conservative militias must prepare themselves to use restraint in such a situation. That won’t be easy.

Don’t misunderstand me here; I’m not advocating letting them get away with attempted murder. Nor am I suggesting that we put our guns down. I firmly believe in our right to defend ourselves. All I’m suggesting is that we don’t go farther than necessary in defending ourselves and other innocent civilians.

I’m also suggesting that when the police take over, we step back and allow them to do their jobs.

Remember, there is no way for the police to know who the good guys are and who the bad guys are in any violent confrontation. They’re forced to assume that anyone who is shooting is automatically a bad guy, until proven innocent. So if they see you or I shooting, there’s a good chance that they might shoot back at us, in an attempt to do the same thing we’re going; protecting innocent lives.

Situations like this can deteriorate quickly. It’s up to use to make sure that they don’t. Even if the left offers war, we don’t have to accept their offer.

There are enough of us, with enough firearms, that we can easily afford to fight a purely defensive war, forcing them to bring the battle to us.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

References: 

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/politics/wp/2017/10/24/the-nfl-player-protests-broken-down-by-team-and-week/?utm_term=.9642618ba4e6

eastbaytimes.com/2017/04/13/pick-on-someone-your-own-caliber-lgbt-gun-group-promotes-firearms-for-self-defense/

What Makes A House A Shelter?

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Of all our survival needs, shelter is high up on the list. It is shelter, along with clothing and heating, which helps us to maintain our body heat, regardless of how frightening the weather outside might get.

This explains why we all collectively spend roughly one-third of our income on housing, whether that is buying a home, renting one, renting an apartment, or even paying for a trailer to live in.

But what makes a house, or any of those other things I mentioned, work as a shelter?

Basically, it’s three things:

  • The ability to keep the rain off our heads
  • The ability to block the wind
  • The ability to hold in or hold out heat

While there are a lot of other factors that go into home design, it is those three things that have dictated the basic design concepts of homes since the beginning of time. It doesn’t matter if you’re talking about living in a cave, a Mongolian Yurt, or a modern home, the walls and roof are there to accomplish those three basic tasks.

Everything else about home design is about making the space more comfortable to live in.

This is Why Conventional Preparedness Wisdom is Deadly!

Homes Under Attack

But as the recent spate of hurricanes has proven, not all homes are created equal. Sadly, many of the homes in Houston, Florida, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and other Caribbean Islands were severely damaged or even destroyed by the winds and flooding that those hurricanes wrought.

Granted, many of the homes destroyed in those hurricanes were not built to American standards, or even to the International Building Code standards. That’s because most of the homes that were destroyed belonged to the poorer people living in the islands, who build their homes however they can, out of whatever materials they can and with no attention to the building code.

But to be honest, American homes are hard pressed to survive such an onslaught, and many of those didn’t fare all that well either. The basic problem in those cases is usually flooding, which American home building techniques and the materials we use, can’t handle.

By comparison, I’ve spent a fair amount of time south of the border, in Mexico. Rather than being built out of wood, like our homes are, most of theirs are built out of cement block, with tile floors. While that may not make for as attractive a house, and it definitely doesn’t make for as well insulated a home, it does make a home that is much more water resistant. When those homes flood, it’s a mess to clean up, but that’s about it. They don’t have to tear out drywall, insulation, carpeting and underlayment.

If we were to adopt their building techniques, we would have homes that were much more resilient to hurricanes and other natural disasters. But there are tradeoffs as well, especially in the area of keeping our homes cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

The only problem with that idea, is that most of us already have our homes built. So it would be impractical to build ourselves new homes and abandon our old ones.

With that in mind, what we really need to do is find a way to improve our existing homes ability to withstand the forces that nature can bring against them.

How Does Nature Damage Homes?

There are actually quite a number of different ways in which nature can damage our homes. Each natural disaster has its own damage it can produce. Even normal storms can cause damage. Allow me to briefly summarize this damage:

  • Hurricanes: High winds can tear off roofs, blow out windows, and even flatten walls. Flooding can weaken foundations and damage the materials the home is made of, especially on the interior of the home.
  • Tornados: Even higher winds than hurricanes produce can tear off roofs, drive loose objects through windows and some walls, and generally tear things apart.
  • Flooding: As with hurricanes, flooding can damage the materials the home is made of, requiring major rebuilding, as well as undermining the foundation.
  • Earthquake: Literally shakes the house to pieces.
  • Hail: Damage to roof shingles.
  • Wildfire: Burning the home down; many of the materials our homes are built from are flammable.

Of course, it’s unlikely that your home is in a place where you are subject to all of these possibilities. It seems that some parts of the country are more susceptible to some, while other parts of the country are more susceptible to others.

Nevertheless, while some of these forces of nature are so severe that there is nothing we can do about them, there are others which we can effectively combat, protecting our homes from damage and destruction.

Protecting Your Home from the Ravages of Nature

With all this potential for damage and destruction, it only makes sense to ensure that our homes are as well protected as possible. After all, for most of us, our home is our biggest investment. With that in mind, it only makes sense to take good care of it.

While there are specific actions that we can take to ensure the soundness of various parts of our homes and their ability to withstand damage, it should be noted that the overall maintenance and condition of your home is important. The better condition that your home is in, the more likely it will be to sustain rough weather, without damage.

Much of the damage which can happen to our homes starts with one loose board, shingle or brick. Wind or rain gets in there and the damage can spread. This can take minutes or years, depending on the nature of the damage and the severity of the weather.

But if we can deny the weather that first opening, we can avoid a lot of damage.

Windows

As we all know, glass is fragile, easy to break. Yet we still use glass windows for our homes, mostly because there really is nothing better to replace them with.

Oh, I suppose you could replace your glass window with a polycarbonate material, like Lexan, which is considerably stronger than glass, as well as more expensive, but even Lexan can be broken by objects driven by the wind.

Nevertheless, this is one option to consider.

Some people recommend taping windows with masking tape or packing tape to keep them from breaking, but that doesn’t work.

There are two basic problems with that. The first is that the tape only makes contact with a small amount of the window’s surface area, so the rest of the window can still bust out. The second is that the sun bakes the adhesive from the tape onto the window, making it hard to remove it.

The best way of protecting windows is probably the oldest, shutters. People have been using shutters to protect their windows since before glass was used in them. They aren’t all that popular today, but if you have shutters on your home; real shutters that is, you’re ready to protect it.

If you don’t have shutters, you can simulate them by cutting pieces of plywood and putting them over your windows. That’s quite effective in the face of a hurricane; but there usually isn’t enough time to even bother when there’s a chance of tornadoes.

Even thin plywood will offer a lot of protection to the glass, helping prevent it from being broken.

The other option is to add security window film on the inside of the windows. This is something like window tinting film, but it is clear and thicker than tint. What it does, in addition to making the glass stronger, is keep the glass in place, should it get broken, much like a car’s windshield is designed to stay intact, even when it is shattered.

Roofs

After windows, the roof is the most vulnerable parts of your home. Hail can fall upon it, causing damage and high winds from hurricanes or tornadoes can lift it right off the home, more or less intact, depositing it some distance away. It can also be damaged by tree limbs falling on it, as they break off of trees.

The typical asphalt or fiberglass tiles we use for roofs today are not the best roofing material you can buy. Nor is a typical two-sloped roof the best design. Roofs made with two opposing slopes leave vertical walls at the gable ends. In contrast, a hip roof, with four or more sloped surfaces, eliminates this problem. Eliminating the gable ends eliminates the large sail area for the wind to push against.

Standard two-sloped roofs can be converted to hip roofs by removing the trusses at the ends and framing in the hip roof portion. Any framing contractor can do this work. While it might be expensive, it wouldn’t be anywhere near as expensive as replacing the roof.

The biggest wind force working on a roof is updrafts. This is caused by wind hitting the wall of the home and looking for the easiest direction it can travel. Those updrafts catch on the roof overhang, pushing up on it and sometimes even tearing the roof off, lifting it right off the house. A smaller amount of overhang, with narrower soffits reduces this risk.

The other thing that should be done with roofs is to have the trusses installed with hurricane clips. These are metal straps, which attach the trusses more firmly to the wall structure, fighting against the propensity for the updraft to lift the roof off the home.

Another thing to consider is changing your roof shingles, replacing them with another material, which is less susceptible to damage. Of all the common roofing materials used, metal roofs are the best for this. Even if they become pock damaged by hail, it will not affect the ability of the roof to protect the home.

Finally, if you have any trees, whose branches overhang your home’s roof, you should cut off those limbs. This is especially true of old or diseased trees, where the branches might be weak and susceptible to breaking in high winds. A tree limb falling on your roof can do a lot of damage.

Exterior Walls

The exterior walls of your home are much less likely to become damaged than any other part. However, there are some things that can happen, especially if your home is not properly maintained.

High winds can peel off wood, aluminum or vinyl siding. All they need is a loose corner or edge. The corner trim on your home is intended to protect against this, so you want to check that your corner trim is firmly attached, that the siding does not extend out past the corner trim and that the siding is attached firmly to the home.

It’s also a good idea to caulk the seam between the siding and the corner trim. A good painter will do this when the home is painted. If you paint your home yourself, be sure to include this in your prep work.

Flooding

Of all possible damage that can happen to a home, flooding is the hardest to prevent and the hardest to repair.

Our homes are not designed to be boats or dams, withstanding the rising waters. Even so, there are some things that we can do.

Brick homes withstand flooding better than wood-sided ones do, as the brick is not as badly affected by the water. It also makes a better barrier against water, if it is properly sealed.

However, most brick homes will have spaces between bricks, near the bottom of the wall, which are not filled with mortar. This is done to allow vents for equalizing air pressure, as well as places for water to drain out of the wall. For the wall to be waterproof, these must be filled.

Even with this done, water can get into your home, simply by flowing under the doors. This is why most people who live in hurricane zones will put sandbags in front of their doors, anytime a hurricane is on the way. If you don’t have sandbags, the same thing can be done by filling kitchen trash bags 1/3 full of water, and attaching the drawstrings for those bags to the door frame, holding the bags up. The water in the bags turns the bags themselves into very effective barriers against minor flooding.

Of course, that’s only going to work for low-level flooding, say a foot or less. For more than that, you’d need to have either a sandbag wall running all the way around your home, an earthen berm, or one of the inflatable water dams (inflate with water), which have been designed to replace sandbag walls.

There are farmhouses and whole towns in North Dakota, which have been built with an earthen berm all the way around them. This was done to combat the annual spring flooding that happens there. It floods a lot because the nearby river dips south, and then turns north again, before going back south. So, that point where it turns back north stays frozen, while the farther south parts thaw, effectively putting a dam across the river and causing flooding.

Regardless of whether sandbags, inflatable dams or an earthen berm is used, the barrier must be out away from your home, leaving at least a three foot gap for you to walk through, checking for leaks. Some leaks are likely to happen, so you should have transfer pumps, which you can use to pump that water back out over the barrier.

While adding this sort of barrier is a expensive, as well as a lot of work, it’s the only sure way of protecting your home from flooding. So, if you are living in an area which is prone to having problems with floods, this is something that you might want to consider.

Overall, having a shelter is one survival need you have to start with. Now check your home and see if you can call it a safe shelter.

If it’s not, what do you expect to turn it into one?

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

What You Need To Know About Waterproofing Your Stockpile

The recent spate of hurricanes hitting Houston, the Western part of the Florida peninsula and Puerto Rico have given many of us an opportunity to rethink our prepping plans.

That’s as it should be, as we should always be looking to improve, and one of the best tools we have for that is to analyze the disasters that happen, looking for lessons to be learned.

I’ve lived through hurricanes before, as my home is in a hurricane zone, but never as severe as these three have been. More than anything, the big difference that I noticed from these three hurricanes, was the amount of flooding they caused. That made the ones I lived through seem rather minor indeed.

What these hurricanes made me rethink was, not surprisingly, my stockpile. But not what’s in it, rather how protected is it from damage.

Major flooding was not part of my thinking, when I was working out what to store and where to store it. Considering that I live in a hurricane zone, I decided that maybe I need to rethink it.

I have to wonder is any preppers living in Puerto Rico, Florida and the part of Houston that got flooded are really much better off than their neighbors, especially the people of Puerto Rico. While many homes in Puerto Rico are made of cement block, which is pretty much impervious to flooding, the poorer people make their homes of whatever they can. So many of those homes might be made of much less substantive material.

Of course, the people who own those homes probably aren’t preppers anyway.

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The reason that I bring this point up, is that the average American home doesn’t stand up well to flooding either. The people who live in the parts of Houston which flooded are left with the need to largely rebuild their homes, as well as replace just about everything that was on the ground floor.

For most of us, this would probably also mean replacing most of our prepping stockpile, especially if we stored it in the basement. Anything left there would certainly be waterlogged after the home flooded.

Not All Waterproofing is the Same

When I first started thinking about this, one of the first things I realized is that not all waterproofing is the same. Let me explain.

Our homes are waterproofed or maybe I should say water resistant, at least from rain. But they are not waterproofed from flooding. They are only water resistant to water falling from the sky. So, when we talk waterproofing, we need to make sure that we understand what we’re talking about.

Basically, there are two different types of water we need to concern ourselves with, both of which can come from a hurricane or storm. One is water falling down, or rain, and the other is water coming up, or flooding. That one has to include the storm surge that a hurricane can cause too.

I’m not sure if there are actual stated levels of waterproofing that apply to a stockpile, but I haven’t seen any. However, I can easily see four different levels of protection that we should consider:

  • Waterproof – You can submerge it in water and it won’t be damaged. Think a sealed can of food.
  • Water resistant – Water can fall on it and it won’t be damaged, as long as the water flows off of it. But, if it is submerged in water, even partially, it will be damaged. Think a roll of TP, wrapped tightly in a plastic bag.
  • Floating – The item itself isn’t waterproof or water resistant, nor is its container, but it will float, without the water being able to soak in. Think supplies in a plastic storage bin.
  • Out of the water’s reach – The item is stored inside a building, so the rain can’t get to it, but high enough off the ground that the flood waters can’t get to it either. Think something sitting in the attic of a two-story home, but only the first story floods.

Our efforts to protect our stockpiles from the water can consist of a combination of these different strategies, depending on the particular item and where we are going to store it in our home. Items stored in the attic might only need to be water resistant or in floating containers, especially since they are probably out of the water’s reach. But items stored in the basement probably have to be waterproof, as any flooding will flood the basement first, so even if it is water resistant or in floating containers, it won’t do any good.

Waterproofing Your Food Stockpile

Now that we’ve established our ground rules, let’s start looking at some specific items. We’ll start with food, because that is the biggest part of any of our stockpiles. Fortunately, the way we package food for long-term storage gives us a great head start.

Much of the food that we buy at the local supermarket is not packed in a way that makes it waterproof, so we repack it for our stockpiles. One of the few things that is truly waterproof is canned goods. Other than the risk of the can rusting through, there is little that can happen to a can to allow water into it.

The problem comes in with dry foods, which make up the bulk of our food stockpiles. Since these foods do not typically come in airproof and insect proof packaging, we typically repack them in five gallon buckets, lined with aluminized Mylar bags. In this process of trying to protect it from bacteria, insects, rodents and oxygen. In the process, we also make it waterproof.

The bigger problem with our food is that these waterproof containers could actually float off, if our home becomes damaged severely enough to allow it.

That may not seem like much of an issue to you, but if you look at photos taken of the results of floods, you’ll see a lot of stuff scattered around, some of that stuff is a whole lot bigger than buckets of food. I distinctly remember seeing video of cars and whole buildings floating away during the tsunami that hit Japan.

So, how can we solve this?

Simply by anchoring our buckets of food in a way that won’t allow them to float off. That can be done by running a chain through their handles and anchoring it to the walls of your basement, or by making your storage room into a cage that will remain intact, even if your home becomes destroyed.

Another way of protecting your food from floating off is to bury some of it.

Five gallon buckets are ideal for burying food, as there’s nothing that will decompose or become damaged by contact with dirt and water, other than the wire handle. But plastic handled buckets won’t even have this problem.

Making Practical Decisions About Waterproofing

The bigger problem isn’t waterproofing your food stockpile, but everything else that you have stockpiled. While some of that might also be in five gallon buckets, which would make it waterproof, most probably isn’t, leaving it vulnerable to damage.

Solving this problem can be extremely challenging, mostly due to the vast volume of other supplies that you might have. In many cases, rather than actually waterproofing the items, you may be able to give it adequate protection, by utilizing one of the other levels.

Take a wood pile, for example. Buying enough waterproof containers to keep your firewood safe from flooding is a big unrealistic. There are few containers that are large enough for more than a few pieces of wood, so it would take an awful lot of container to fully protect your entire stock of firewood. However, chances are that it wouldn’t really need that level of protection.

Before waterproofing anything, you need to determine what level of flooding you are going to protect yourself from. That depends on a combination of the types of floods your area is potentially subject to, and where in your home any particular item in your stockpile will be stored.

If you live near the ocean, where you might have to deal with the storm surge from a hurricane or a tsunami, then you need to consider the highest level that could reach. If you live inland, any flooding you are likely to encounter would be by an overflowing lake or river. How high the water level would be from that depends on the amount of rain falling and the terrain.

Actually, terrain is a very important factor, no matter where you live and what sort of flooding you might be subject to. So as part of your prepping, you need to get topographical maps of your area, including any bodies of water which might cause flooding. From those maps, you can see how high the water would have to rise, before it could get to your home, how much lower-lying land would have to flood first, and hopefully make some determination of some signs that would give you warning about potential flooding.

Technically, your home is flooded if any water running across the ground can get into it. One inch of water is still flooding, just like 20 feet of it is. It’s just that 20 feet of flooding can do more damage.

The other factor to consider, as I mentioned, is where the item is to be stored in your home. Items that are stored in the attic may not need to be waterproofed, simply water resistant, because they won’t be submerged in water. If your roof becomes damaged, those items may get rained on, but chances are they won’t be submerged. If they are, it would mean that your home was totally destroyed and you probably wouldn’t be able to find those items anyway.

Basement Storage

People who have a basement tend to put their stockpiles there. I agree from the viewpoint of food, as food is already going to be packed in waterproof containers. Therefore, it will survive any level of flooding you are likely to encounter.

But not all your food should be stored in your basement, simply because it will also be the part of your home which retains water the longest. So, you might be in your home and needing to make repairs, but unable to get to your food supply. A few buckets of food, stored in a closet or laundry room could make all the difference in that situation.

Second Floor Storage

If you own a two-story home, you have an advantage over those who only have a one-story home.

I have seen many flood situations where the first story of the homes is flooded almost up to the ceiling, but the second story is dry.

If there is enough advance notice of the pending flood, furniture and other items can be moved from the first floor to the second, in order to protect them from damage.

This advantage also works for your prepping stockpile. The buckets of food that I was just talking about keeping out of the basement can most effectively be stored on the second floor of the home, protecting them from flooding, while keeping them accessible.

Attic Storage

I store a fair number of supplies in my attic, although I do not store food there. Anything stored in the attic has to be more of less impervious to heat, and food isn’t. However, many other supplies are. In this case, the supplies can be made water resistant, rather than waterproofed.

My wife has put in a good stock of toilet paper, enough to last us over a year, even if our kids come back home. That is left in its original plastic packaging and then placed in large plastic trash bags (55 gallon bags), which are sealed with packing tape. While this is not fully waterproofed, it is highly water resistant and will float. Until the water attacked the tape for long enough to destroy the adhesive, it is essentially waterproof.

Most of the other items we have stored in the attic are stored in plastic storage bins. These also have the lids held on by packing tape, but not to make them waterproof, but rather to keep the kids from coming off.

As these bins will float (we get rid of ones that are cracked or have holes in them), everything stored in them is fairly water resistant, unless the house is totally underwater, preventing the bins from floating.

There Are Limits

Keep in mind that there are limits to what you are going to be able to do. One of my big concerns is my workshop, which is in my garage. There is no realistic way of keeping my tools in waterproof containers, as I use them regularly.

All I can hope is that the doors of the garage aren’t breached and that my tools will all be there when everything is said and done.

Another area that is limited is bulk storage of things like firewood. There is just no practical way of storing large amounts of firewood in a way that is waterproof. The best that you can hope for is that the flooding isn’t so bad that it floats the wood out of the storage racks.

As long as the wood stays there, it can be dried out and used, after the flooding is over. Hopefully, the top of the wood pile won’t get wet, so will be usable.

Now you should be able to fix the way you keep your stockpile so you and your family would stay safe. But if you lose it, would be able to survive without it?

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

What You Need To Know About Waterproofing Your Stockpile

The recent spate of hurricanes hitting Houston, the Western part of the Florida peninsula and Puerto Rico have given many of us an opportunity to rethink our prepping plans.

That’s as it should be, as we should always be looking to improve, and one of the best tools we have for that is to analyze the disasters that happen, looking for lessons to be learned.

I’ve lived through hurricanes before, as my home is in a hurricane zone, but never as severe as these three have been. More than anything, the big difference that I noticed from these three hurricanes, was the amount of flooding they caused. That made the ones I lived through seem rather minor indeed.

What these hurricanes made me rethink was, not surprisingly, my stockpile. But not what’s in it, rather how protected is it from damage.

Major flooding was not part of my thinking, when I was working out what to store and where to store it. Considering that I live in a hurricane zone, I decided that maybe I need to rethink it.

I have to wonder is any preppers living in Puerto Rico, Florida and the part of Houston that got flooded are really much better off than their neighbors, especially the people of Puerto Rico. While many homes in Puerto Rico are made of cement block, which is pretty much impervious to flooding, the poorer people make their homes of whatever they can. So many of those homes might be made of much less substantive material.

Of course, the people who own those homes probably aren’t preppers anyway.

3 Second SEAL Test Will Tell You If You’ll Survive A SHTF Situation

The reason that I bring this point up, is that the average American home doesn’t stand up well to flooding either. The people who live in the parts of Houston which flooded are left with the need to largely rebuild their homes, as well as replace just about everything that was on the ground floor.

For most of us, this would probably also mean replacing most of our prepping stockpile, especially if we stored it in the basement. Anything left there would certainly be waterlogged after the home flooded.

Not All Waterproofing is the Same

When I first started thinking about this, one of the first things I realized is that not all waterproofing is the same. Let me explain.

Our homes are waterproofed or maybe I should say water resistant, at least from rain. But they are not waterproofed from flooding. They are only water resistant to water falling from the sky. So, when we talk waterproofing, we need to make sure that we understand what we’re talking about.

Basically, there are two different types of water we need to concern ourselves with, both of which can come from a hurricane or storm. One is water falling down, or rain, and the other is water coming up, or flooding. That one has to include the storm surge that a hurricane can cause too.

I’m not sure if there are actual stated levels of waterproofing that apply to a stockpile, but I haven’t seen any. However, I can easily see four different levels of protection that we should consider:

  • Waterproof – You can submerge it in water and it won’t be damaged. Think a sealed can of food.
  • Water resistant – Water can fall on it and it won’t be damaged, as long as the water flows off of it. But, if it is submerged in water, even partially, it will be damaged. Think a roll of TP, wrapped tightly in a plastic bag.
  • Floating – The item itself isn’t waterproof or water resistant, nor is its container, but it will float, without the water being able to soak in. Think supplies in a plastic storage bin.
  • Out of the water’s reach – The item is stored inside a building, so the rain can’t get to it, but high enough off the ground that the flood waters can’t get to it either. Think something sitting in the attic of a two-story home, but only the first story floods.

Our efforts to protect our stockpiles from the water can consist of a combination of these different strategies, depending on the particular item and where we are going to store it in our home. Items stored in the attic might only need to be water resistant or in floating containers, especially since they are probably out of the water’s reach. But items stored in the basement probably have to be waterproof, as any flooding will flood the basement first, so even if it is water resistant or in floating containers, it won’t do any good.

Waterproofing Your Food Stockpile

Now that we’ve established our ground rules, let’s start looking at some specific items. We’ll start with food, because that is the biggest part of any of our stockpiles. Fortunately, the way we package food for long-term storage gives us a great head start.

Much of the food that we buy at the local supermarket is not packed in a way that makes it waterproof, so we repack it for our stockpiles. One of the few things that is truly waterproof is canned goods. Other than the risk of the can rusting through, there is little that can happen to a can to allow water into it.

The problem comes in with dry foods, which make up the bulk of our food stockpiles. Since these foods do not typically come in airproof and insect proof packaging, we typically repack them in five gallon buckets, lined with aluminized Mylar bags. In this process of trying to protect it from bacteria, insects, rodents and oxygen. In the process, we also make it waterproof.

The bigger problem with our food is that these waterproof containers could actually float off, if our home becomes damaged severely enough to allow it.

That may not seem like much of an issue to you, but if you look at photos taken of the results of floods, you’ll see a lot of stuff scattered around, some of that stuff is a whole lot bigger than buckets of food. I distinctly remember seeing video of cars and whole buildings floating away during the tsunami that hit Japan.

So, how can we solve this?

Simply by anchoring our buckets of food in a way that won’t allow them to float off. That can be done by running a chain through their handles and anchoring it to the walls of your basement, or by making your storage room into a cage that will remain intact, even if your home becomes destroyed.

Another way of protecting your food from floating off is to bury some of it.

Five gallon buckets are ideal for burying food, as there’s nothing that will decompose or become damaged by contact with dirt and water, other than the wire handle. But plastic handled buckets won’t even have this problem.

Making Practical Decisions About Waterproofing

The bigger problem isn’t waterproofing your food stockpile, but everything else that you have stockpiled. While some of that might also be in five gallon buckets, which would make it waterproof, most probably isn’t, leaving it vulnerable to damage.

Solving this problem can be extremely challenging, mostly due to the vast volume of other supplies that you might have. In many cases, rather than actually waterproofing the items, you may be able to give it adequate protection, by utilizing one of the other levels.

Take a wood pile, for example. Buying enough waterproof containers to keep your firewood safe from flooding is a big unrealistic. There are few containers that are large enough for more than a few pieces of wood, so it would take an awful lot of container to fully protect your entire stock of firewood. However, chances are that it wouldn’t really need that level of protection.

Before waterproofing anything, you need to determine what level of flooding you are going to protect yourself from. That depends on a combination of the types of floods your area is potentially subject to, and where in your home any particular item in your stockpile will be stored.

If you live near the ocean, where you might have to deal with the storm surge from a hurricane or a tsunami, then you need to consider the highest level that could reach. If you live inland, any flooding you are likely to encounter would be by an overflowing lake or river. How high the water level would be from that depends on the amount of rain falling and the terrain.

Actually, terrain is a very important factor, no matter where you live and what sort of flooding you might be subject to. So as part of your prepping, you need to get topographical maps of your area, including any bodies of water which might cause flooding. From those maps, you can see how high the water would have to rise, before it could get to your home, how much lower-lying land would have to flood first, and hopefully make some determination of some signs that would give you warning about potential flooding.

Technically, your home is flooded if any water running across the ground can get into it. One inch of water is still flooding, just like 20 feet of it is. It’s just that 20 feet of flooding can do more damage.

The other factor to consider, as I mentioned, is where the item is to be stored in your home. Items that are stored in the attic may not need to be waterproofed, simply water resistant, because they won’t be submerged in water. If your roof becomes damaged, those items may get rained on, but chances are they won’t be submerged. If they are, it would mean that your home was totally destroyed and you probably wouldn’t be able to find those items anyway.

Basement Storage

People who have a basement tend to put their stockpiles there. I agree from the viewpoint of food, as food is already going to be packed in waterproof containers. Therefore, it will survive any level of flooding you are likely to encounter.

But not all your food should be stored in your basement, simply because it will also be the part of your home which retains water the longest. So, you might be in your home and needing to make repairs, but unable to get to your food supply. A few buckets of food, stored in a closet or laundry room could make all the difference in that situation.

Second Floor Storage

If you own a two-story home, you have an advantage over those who only have a one-story home.

I have seen many flood situations where the first story of the homes is flooded almost up to the ceiling, but the second story is dry.

If there is enough advance notice of the pending flood, furniture and other items can be moved from the first floor to the second, in order to protect them from damage.

This advantage also works for your prepping stockpile. The buckets of food that I was just talking about keeping out of the basement can most effectively be stored on the second floor of the home, protecting them from flooding, while keeping them accessible.

Attic Storage

I store a fair number of supplies in my attic, although I do not store food there. Anything stored in the attic has to be more of less impervious to heat, and food isn’t. However, many other supplies are. In this case, the supplies can be made water resistant, rather than waterproofed.

My wife has put in a good stock of toilet paper, enough to last us over a year, even if our kids come back home. That is left in its original plastic packaging and then placed in large plastic trash bags (55 gallon bags), which are sealed with packing tape. While this is not fully waterproofed, it is highly water resistant and will float. Until the water attacked the tape for long enough to destroy the adhesive, it is essentially waterproof.

Most of the other items we have stored in the attic are stored in plastic storage bins. These also have the lids held on by packing tape, but not to make them waterproof, but rather to keep the kids from coming off.

As these bins will float (we get rid of ones that are cracked or have holes in them), everything stored in them is fairly water resistant, unless the house is totally underwater, preventing the bins from floating.

There Are Limits

Keep in mind that there are limits to what you are going to be able to do. One of my big concerns is my workshop, which is in my garage. There is no realistic way of keeping my tools in waterproof containers, as I use them regularly.

All I can hope is that the doors of the garage aren’t breached and that my tools will all be there when everything is said and done.

Another area that is limited is bulk storage of things like firewood. There is just no practical way of storing large amounts of firewood in a way that is waterproof. The best that you can hope for is that the flooding isn’t so bad that it floats the wood out of the storage racks.

As long as the wood stays there, it can be dried out and used, after the flooding is over. Hopefully, the top of the wood pile won’t get wet, so will be usable.

Now you should be able to fix the way you keep your stockpile so you and your family would stay safe. But if you lose it, would be able to survive without it?

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

What You Need To Know About Waterproofing Your Stockpile

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The recent spate of hurricanes hitting Houston, the Western part of the Florida peninsula and Puerto Rico have given many of us an opportunity to rethink our prepping plans.

That’s as it should be, as we should always be looking to improve, and one of the best tools we have for that is to analyze the disasters that happen, looking for lessons to be learned.

I’ve lived through hurricanes before, as my home is in a hurricane zone, but never as severe as these three have been. More than anything, the big difference that I noticed from these three hurricanes, was the amount of flooding they caused. That made the ones I lived through seem rather minor indeed.

What these hurricanes made me rethink was, not surprisingly, my stockpile. But not what’s in it, rather how protected is it from damage.

Major flooding was not part of my thinking, when I was working out what to store and where to store it. Considering that I live in a hurricane zone, I decided that maybe I need to rethink it.

I have to wonder is any preppers living in Puerto Rico, Florida and the part of Houston that got flooded are really much better off than their neighbors, especially the people of Puerto Rico. While many homes in Puerto Rico are made of cement block, which is pretty much impervious to flooding, the poorer people make their homes of whatever they can. So many of those homes might be made of much less substantive material.

Of course, the people who own those homes probably aren’t preppers anyway.

3 Second SEAL Test Will Tell You If You’ll Survive A SHTF Situation

The reason that I bring this point up, is that the average American home doesn’t stand up well to flooding either. The people who live in the parts of Houston which flooded are left with the need to largely rebuild their homes, as well as replace just about everything that was on the ground floor.

For most of us, this would probably also mean replacing most of our prepping stockpile, especially if we stored it in the basement. Anything left there would certainly be waterlogged after the home flooded.

Not All Waterproofing is the Same

When I first started thinking about this, one of the first things I realized is that not all waterproofing is the same. Let me explain.

Our homes are waterproofed or maybe I should say water resistant, at least from rain. But they are not waterproofed from flooding. They are only water resistant to water falling from the sky. So, when we talk waterproofing, we need to make sure that we understand what we’re talking about.

Basically, there are two different types of water we need to concern ourselves with, both of which can come from a hurricane or storm. One is water falling down, or rain, and the other is water coming up, or flooding. That one has to include the storm surge that a hurricane can cause too.

I’m not sure if there are actual stated levels of waterproofing that apply to a stockpile, but I haven’t seen any. However, I can easily see four different levels of protection that we should consider:

  • Waterproof – You can submerge it in water and it won’t be damaged. Think a sealed can of food.
  • Water resistant – Water can fall on it and it won’t be damaged, as long as the water flows off of it. But, if it is submerged in water, even partially, it will be damaged. Think a roll of TP, wrapped tightly in a plastic bag.
  • Floating – The item itself isn’t waterproof or water resistant, nor is its container, but it will float, without the water being able to soak in. Think supplies in a plastic storage bin.
  • Out of the water’s reach – The item is stored inside a building, so the rain can’t get to it, but high enough off the ground that the flood waters can’t get to it either. Think something sitting in the attic of a two-story home, but only the first story floods.

Our efforts to protect our stockpiles from the water can consist of a combination of these different strategies, depending on the particular item and where we are going to store it in our home. Items stored in the attic might only need to be water resistant or in floating containers, especially since they are probably out of the water’s reach. But items stored in the basement probably have to be waterproof, as any flooding will flood the basement first, so even if it is water resistant or in floating containers, it won’t do any good.

Waterproofing Your Food Stockpile

Now that we’ve established our ground rules, let’s start looking at some specific items. We’ll start with food, because that is the biggest part of any of our stockpiles. Fortunately, the way we package food for long-term storage gives us a great head start.

Much of the food that we buy at the local supermarket is not packed in a way that makes it waterproof, so we repack it for our stockpiles. One of the few things that is truly waterproof is canned goods. Other than the risk of the can rusting through, there is little that can happen to a can to allow water into it.

The problem comes in with dry foods, which make up the bulk of our food stockpiles. Since these foods do not typically come in airproof and insect proof packaging, we typically repack them in five gallon buckets, lined with aluminized Mylar bags. In this process of trying to protect it from bacteria, insects, rodents and oxygen. In the process, we also make it waterproof.

The bigger problem with our food is that these waterproof containers could actually float off, if our home becomes damaged severely enough to allow it.

That may not seem like much of an issue to you, but if you look at photos taken of the results of floods, you’ll see a lot of stuff scattered around, some of that stuff is a whole lot bigger than buckets of food. I distinctly remember seeing video of cars and whole buildings floating away during the tsunami that hit Japan.

So, how can we solve this?

Simply by anchoring our buckets of food in a way that won’t allow them to float off. That can be done by running a chain through their handles and anchoring it to the walls of your basement, or by making your storage room into a cage that will remain intact, even if your home becomes destroyed.

Another way of protecting your food from floating off is to bury some of it.

Five gallon buckets are ideal for burying food, as there’s nothing that will decompose or become damaged by contact with dirt and water, other than the wire handle. But plastic handled buckets won’t even have this problem.

Making Practical Decisions About Waterproofing

The bigger problem isn’t waterproofing your food stockpile, but everything else that you have stockpiled. While some of that might also be in five gallon buckets, which would make it waterproof, most probably isn’t, leaving it vulnerable to damage.

Solving this problem can be extremely challenging, mostly due to the vast volume of other supplies that you might have. In many cases, rather than actually waterproofing the items, you may be able to give it adequate protection, by utilizing one of the other levels.

Take a wood pile, for example. Buying enough waterproof containers to keep your firewood safe from flooding is a big unrealistic. There are few containers that are large enough for more than a few pieces of wood, so it would take an awful lot of container to fully protect your entire stock of firewood. However, chances are that it wouldn’t really need that level of protection.

Before waterproofing anything, you need to determine what level of flooding you are going to protect yourself from. That depends on a combination of the types of floods your area is potentially subject to, and where in your home any particular item in your stockpile will be stored.

If you live near the ocean, where you might have to deal with the storm surge from a hurricane or a tsunami, then you need to consider the highest level that could reach. If you live inland, any flooding you are likely to encounter would be by an overflowing lake or river. How high the water level would be from that depends on the amount of rain falling and the terrain.

Actually, terrain is a very important factor, no matter where you live and what sort of flooding you might be subject to. So as part of your prepping, you need to get topographical maps of your area, including any bodies of water which might cause flooding. From those maps, you can see how high the water would have to rise, before it could get to your home, how much lower-lying land would have to flood first, and hopefully make some determination of some signs that would give you warning about potential flooding.

Technically, your home is flooded if any water running across the ground can get into it. One inch of water is still flooding, just like 20 feet of it is. It’s just that 20 feet of flooding can do more damage.

The other factor to consider, as I mentioned, is where the item is to be stored in your home. Items that are stored in the attic may not need to be waterproofed, simply water resistant, because they won’t be submerged in water. If your roof becomes damaged, those items may get rained on, but chances are they won’t be submerged. If they are, it would mean that your home was totally destroyed and you probably wouldn’t be able to find those items anyway.

Basement Storage

People who have a basement tend to put their stockpiles there. I agree from the viewpoint of food, as food is already going to be packed in waterproof containers. Therefore, it will survive any level of flooding you are likely to encounter.

But not all your food should be stored in your basement, simply because it will also be the part of your home which retains water the longest. So, you might be in your home and needing to make repairs, but unable to get to your food supply. A few buckets of food, stored in a closet or laundry room could make all the difference in that situation.

Second Floor Storage

If you own a two-story home, you have an advantage over those who only have a one-story home.

I have seen many flood situations where the first story of the homes is flooded almost up to the ceiling, but the second story is dry.

If there is enough advance notice of the pending flood, furniture and other items can be moved from the first floor to the second, in order to protect them from damage.

This advantage also works for your prepping stockpile. The buckets of food that I was just talking about keeping out of the basement can most effectively be stored on the second floor of the home, protecting them from flooding, while keeping them accessible.

Attic Storage

I store a fair number of supplies in my attic, although I do not store food there. Anything stored in the attic has to be more of less impervious to heat, and food isn’t. However, many other supplies are. In this case, the supplies can be made water resistant, rather than waterproofed.

My wife has put in a good stock of toilet paper, enough to last us over a year, even if our kids come back home. That is left in its original plastic packaging and then placed in large plastic trash bags (55 gallon bags), which are sealed with packing tape. While this is not fully waterproofed, it is highly water resistant and will float. Until the water attacked the tape for long enough to destroy the adhesive, it is essentially waterproof.

Most of the other items we have stored in the attic are stored in plastic storage bins. These also have the lids held on by packing tape, but not to make them waterproof, but rather to keep the kids from coming off.

As these bins will float (we get rid of ones that are cracked or have holes in them), everything stored in them is fairly water resistant, unless the house is totally underwater, preventing the bins from floating.

There Are Limits

Keep in mind that there are limits to what you are going to be able to do. One of my big concerns is my workshop, which is in my garage. There is no realistic way of keeping my tools in waterproof containers, as I use them regularly.

All I can hope is that the doors of the garage aren’t breached and that my tools will all be there when everything is said and done.

Another area that is limited is bulk storage of things like firewood. There is just no practical way of storing large amounts of firewood in a way that is waterproof. The best that you can hope for is that the flooding isn’t so bad that it floats the wood out of the storage racks.

As long as the wood stays there, it can be dried out and used, after the flooding is over. Hopefully, the top of the wood pile won’t get wet, so will be usable.

Now you should be able to fix the way you keep your stockpile so you and your family would stay safe. But if you lose it, would be able to survive without it?

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Is It Time To Let The Gun Grabbers Win?

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As could be expected, the recent shooting in Las Vegas has brought the gun grabbers out of the woodwork (or wherever they hide) to moan and bewail the NRA preventing them from enacting what they call “common sense gun laws,” while accusing anyone and everyone who isn’t in their camp of condoning murder.

This is nothing new, as they follow the leftist philosophy of “never letting a good crisis go to waste”.

The target of the gun grabbers this time is the bump fire stocks that the killer used in murdering 59 people and wounding over 500 more.

Targeting the Wrong Enemy

This device, which the ATF classifies as an “accessory” not a modification, is legal for sale over the counter to pretty much anyone. Probably even to people who can’t legally buy a firearm. It’s not a gun and it’s not a gun modification, so the ATF has seen no reason to control it.

It’s easy to make a strong argument in support of the ATF decision, because you can do the same thing other ways, without having to spend the money on a bump fire stock.

I’ve seen people accomplish the same thing using a rubber band and a belt loop. I suppose if we really put our minds to it, we could come up with a dozen such ways, none of which require spending $150 on this accessory.

On the other hand, the left has a very graphic argument in favor of making bump fire stocks illegal. Had the killer not had access to such a device, he probably couldn’t have killed as many people. Being able to mimic machine gun fire, shooting 400 to 800 rounds per minute (the rate that a bump fire allows) isn’t up to the 750 to 950 rate of a M-4, cut it’s pretty close. Close enough for the shooter’s purposes.

Granted, a trained shooter can learn to shoot the AR-15 about that fast, while being much more accurate, but by all reports, the shooter was not an experienced shooter. He apparently had no military training and he was not known to be a shooter or gun collector. He kept that part of his life secret.

 

This is Why Conventional Preparedness Wisdom is Deadly!

 

I need to say here that I’m not a fan of bump fire. But then, I was never a fan of full-auto fire, even when I was in the military. A lot of guys really enjoyed going “rock and roll” with their M-16s, burning up ammo, but I didn’t. I wanted my shots to go where I aimed and full-auto really doesn’t allow that.

As far as I’m concerned, full-auto fire is only useful for two things:

1 – suppressive fire; when you need to get the enemy to keep their heads down, so that they don’t shoot you.

2 – mass fire; if you’ve got a mob of zombies bearing down on your position  and you need to take out as many as you can as fast as  you can. Real soldiers don’t bunch up like that, knowing it makes them too good a target, but zombies aren’t supposed to be that smart.

But for the Las Vegas shooter, bump fire was apparently a good choice, He wasn’t trying to hit individual targets, just to hit as many as he can, like shooting that mob of zombies. And like the zombies, they were all bunched up, so that he could be pretty much assured that his shots would hit somebody.

So it appears that the existence and ease of purchase of the bump fire stocks did in fact have a part in generating a high body count in this case.

But does that mean they should be outlawed? Should we give up any part of our Second Amendment rights because of a crazed madman who wanted to go out in a blaze of glory, killing as many people as he could?

Leftist politicians and commentators would want us to think so. They have introduced legislation to that effect, claiming that eliminating the bump fire stock would make us all “safer” in some intangible way.

I say that’s intangible, simply because this is the only crime on record, where the bump fire stock has been used. It’s even extremely rare to find the AR-15 used in a crime, let alone fitted with a bump fire stock.

So how is eliminating the bump fire stock going to make anyone safer? Yeah, if there were a rash of crimes being committed with this accessory mounted to AR-15s, I could see that as a possibility, but not for one single crime, no matter how horrific.

But then, the left has never truly been interested in making the streets any safer for law-abiding citizens, that’s just the camouflage they use to push their anti-gun agenda. They need something to sell their ideology to the low-information voters and public safety at least sounds good.

Of course, if they were truly interested in public safety, they’d be much more interested in getting criminals off the streets, instead of lauding them as some sort of folk heroes.

Tell me how Obama talking about the “valuable work that Black Lives Matter,” (BLM) a domestic terrorist organization which uses physical violence as a means of “expression” makes anyone’s life safer. It doesn’t. If Obama or anyone else on the left was truly concerned about public safety, they would condemn BLMs methods, even if they agreed with their goals.

What They Say We Should Do…

I don’t think there is anyone who would argue the statement that “guns are dangerous.” If anything, gun owners and shooters would be the first to say that. We know how dangerous they are, which is why the first thing that any of us teach a new shooter is the four rules of gun safety.

But guns alone aren’t any more dangerous than a rock. It’s the mind behind the gun that turns it into a weapon of murder, just like the mind of the person who kills with a hammer or baseball bat. That’s the issue and the left needs to get on board with dealing with that issue.

Apparently, the Las Vegas killer was mentally unstable, as pretty much all mass shooters are. As in many other such cases, his mental instability had not been diagnosed, so there was no warning of what he was planning. Had there been, he could have been stopped, before doing any damage.

For that matter, existing laws on the books would have prevented him from being able to buy the firearms that he used in the attack. That would have made a real difference.

Eliminating bump fire stocks won’t make anyone any safer. Even Dianne Feinstein admits that, and she’s the loudest voice pushing to eliminate them.

As she has before, she has introduced legislation into the Senate to follow the pattern of California and restrict our Second Amendment rights.

Video first seen on ABC News.

Yes, let’s punish honest, hard-working, law-abiding Americans for what a criminally psychotic person has done! What rubbish.

While it wouldn’t bother me personally to see bump fire stocks taken off the market, I don’t think there should be a law passed to do so.

Such a law would be impossible to enforce anyway, as it requires people who currently have them to turn them in. Without going door to door and searching people’s houses, there is no way of knowing whether everyone turned theirs in.

That’s not only absurd, it’s illegal, breaking our Fourth Amendment rights. Of course, Feinstein isn’t concerned about that.

But then, leftists never really worry about whether a law is enforceable or not anyway. Nevada passed a law requiring universal background checks for gun sales. This means that background checks have to be done in private sales, as well as when a FFL gun dealer sells one. This includes when a person dies and leaves their guns to their children.

The FBI’s NICS has already stated that they cannot and will not perform background checks for private gun sales. States do not have any right to mandate that the federal government provide services. So there is no way for gun owners in Nevada to get the background check that the law requires.

Of course, that doesn’t matter to those on the left, who are suing the governor for not implementing that law. They are claiming that he is breaking the Constitution, by not using his powers to enforce laws that the state legislature passed.

Even so, that might just backfire on them, as the courts could throw the law out, as not being enforceable. As things stand right now, it is impossible for the governor to enforce that law, so it should be thrown out.

…And What They’re Actually Aiming For

The only way that it would be possible to enforce universal background checks would be to vastly increase the size of the NICS, so that they could deal with those individual sales, or to implement universal gun registration. But the law does not allow for registration. So that can’t be done, without changing federal law.

Even if they did, it wouldn’t stop the criminals, who buy stolen guns on the black market anyway. Once again, punish the law-abiding, hard-working Americans, for what criminals do.

While Feinstein’s proposed bill doesn’t address universal background checks, it does go much farther than just eliminating bump fire stocks. As one conservative commentator put it, “This doesn’t put us closer to the slippery slope, it is the slippery slope.”

Feinstein’s bill is a perfectly crafted piece of liberal legislation. I say that because it is sufficiently vague enough to allow leftist politicians and bureaucrats to use it as a means of creating all sorts of legislation to outlaw all sorts of firearm accessories and modifications. Specifically, it outlaws any device that can increase the rate of fire of a semi-automatic firearm.

That’s actually a very broad term, able to be redefined repeatedly over time, in order to make it mean whatever bureaucrats, who are mostly Democrats, want it to.

To start with, what’s a “normal rate of fire” for a semi-automatic firearm? Even the manufacturers can’t agree on that; and does that mean for an experienced shooter or a novice? I’ve seen video of experienced shooters who can pull an AR-15’s trigger as fast as a bump fire stock can, and a whole lot more accurately.

Upgraded triggers can be said to increase the rate of fire, as they make it easier to fire faster; so can spring kits to lighten the trigger pull. Magazines holding more than one round make it easy to fire faster as well.

So do telescopic gunsights for that matter. I have an extended slide release and magazine release installed on my Glock, those both make it so that I can shoot faster, or at least reload faster, which makes it possible for me to shoot faster. I also have a laser sight and tritium night sights, both of which can be considered aids in shooting faster.

My AR-15 has a piston instead of a gas tube, another modification that makes it easy to shoot faster. I’ve also got a foregrip handle, which helps get back on target quicker, another aid in shooting faster. Then there’s the red dot sight, which is definitely faster to use than iron sights are.

I could go on and on. The point is, anything that anyone would do to modify a firearm, improving it from the original, can be considered a means of making the gun shoot faster.

So about the only thing that Feinstein’s law doesn’t make illegal are the guns themselves, holsters and slings. That’s apparently the next step in her nefarious plan.

The point is this; if we allow the left to take away any of our gun rights or to pass a law which restricts the guns we are allowed to have and the modifications we can make to them, they will just keep going.

Their goal is to take all guns out of the hands of law-abiding citizens; and nothing short of that will satisfy them.

Are you going to let them do it?

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Puerto Rico: A Real Life Case Study In Surviving The Worst

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Our country has been plastered by hurricanes lately.

First there was Hurricane Harvey, which turned much of Houston, Texas into a lake, along with Corpus Christi, Rockport and the surrounding area. Then there was Hurricane Irma, which brushed by Puerto Rico and then tried to devour the Florida Peninsula. Finally, the third villain in this story was Hurricane Maria, which demolished Puerto Rico.

While Hurricane Maria was the “weakest” of the three, only a Category IV hurricane, it probably did the most damage. That damage is exacerbated by the fact that Puerto Rico is an island, making it harder to get relief workers and supplies in. Unlike Houston, access to Puerto Rico is limited to a few ports and airports, both of which were damaged by the storm.

Thousands of homes in Puerto Rico were destroyed by the hurricane, some only having their roofs torn off, while others were flattened entirely. Entire apartment buildings are standing with the façade torn off by the high winds, leaving the apartments exposed to the elements.

But the really serious damage from the hurricane wasn’t to people’s homes, although that is rather serious, but rather to the electrical grid. Over 95% of the island is currently without electrical power, not because of damage to the power plants, but rather to the near-total destruction of the transmission lines that carry the electricity produced to people’s homes, offices, stores and companies.

Without electricity, much of what people depend on to survive is eliminated. There is no running water, no communications, and most stores are unable to operate.

Between the lack of electric power to run their cash registers and the communications necessary to reorder stock, even if they sell their inventory for cash, using hand-written receipts, the stores will be empty of critical supplies, such as food, within less than three days.

World’s Smallest Battery Will Power Your House For More Than 2 Days!

But coming up with that cash will be difficult for most people, as the ATM machines that they need to use and the computers for the banks are without power and communications as well. Since few people hold onto much cash these days, but rather use plastic for all their purchases, they are left without the ability to buy even the most basic necessities of life.

While relief efforts are pouring in, there isn’t enough and it’s not getting there fast enough. Unlike the rest of the country, the people of Puerto Rico are limited by being on an island. There isn’t anyplace they can go themselves, to get away from the problems or get what they need.

But getting supplies to the island is only the beginning of the problems. Once the supplies get there, workers encounter problems moving them to those in need. Roads are damaged or blocked by felled trees and other debris and gasoline is in short supply. Those nearest the ports and airports have the best chances of receiving relief supplies, while others, on more remote areas, may receive none.

Medical Issues

The problems that ordinary people have are bad enough. But they don’t hold a candle up to the problems faced by those with serious medical conditions. Hospitals are overrun, between the people who were injured by the hurricane and the normal problems they have to deal with.

On top of that, diesel fuel to run the hospitals’ generators is running short, limiting their ability to treat patients.

The lack of electricity is causing other medical problems as well, such as there not being power to run kidney dialysis machines. People with kidney failure need this treatment three times per week. Without it, their body accumulates too many minerals in the bloodstream and organs, leading to heavy-metal poisoning and death.

The same can be said for many other medical treatments which require electricity to run the equipment.

Medicines themselves are becoming an issue as well. While pharmacies and hospitals were well stocked before the storm, some medicines are running short. The worst of this are medicines which require refrigeration, like insulin. Without refrigeration to keep insulin supplies fresh, diabetics will soon find themselves without this life-saving drug.

Recovery from the Disaster

Rebuilding and restoring Puerto Rico is going to be a major project. The damage was so severe and widespread, that there isn’t any place “safe” on the island that people can go to, to get away from the problems. That also means that there is no good starting point to work from in rebuilding the island. If only part had been damaged, they could use that as a base for rebuilding the rest.

Unsurprisingly, officials have decided that the first focus of restoration has to be government facilities and hospitals. While that makes sense from the viewpoint of needing those to be functional in order to rebuild the rest of the island, it can also be seen as government bureaucrats taking care of themselves.

The first thing that has to be restored is the electrical grid. With so much of the grid damaged, repairs are impossible. Rather, the distribution grid needs to be rebuilt. This little project is projected to take six months, which probably means it will take much longer.

In the mean time, the loss of electricity will mean that people will be without clean running water, power in their homes, refrigeration and the distribution of products to retail stores will be severely limited. As all the farms in the country were destroyed by the hurricane, all food will need to be shipped in for at least the next year, until the 2018 harvest comes in.

While the death toll from the hurricane is officially stated as 16 people, that number will surely rise. Between the lack of necessary medical attention and the lack of clean water, they can expect to see more and more people dying, either of pre-existing conditions or from disease spreading easily due to lack of sanitation. The situation isn’t pretty and it’s likely to get worse, even with all of the efforts being thrown into relief and recovery.

This problem is amplified by the Puerto Rican government’s poor financial condition. With an economy that is near the bankruptcy point, there isn’t the money needed to rebuild the island. Fortunately for them, President Trump has waived the normal requirement for states to pay 25% of disaster relief and recovery funds.

Lessons to be Learned

This disaster was just about as serious as they come. While the process of rebuilding won’t be as bad as it would have been with an EMP, the outright destruction is much worse. The people of Puerto Rico, American citizens, are going to be hard pressed to survive this disaster and come out on top.

Video first seen on The Oregonian.

Nevertheless, there are a lot of lessons that you and I can learn from this disaster. Lessons that we should apply to our own prepping plans, so that when our turn comes, we are not left in the same boat as our countrymen find themselves.

If we don’t take the opportunity to learn, then we could say that their suffering would be in vain.

Shelter

One of the biggest lessons that we can take away from this hurricane, as well as the ones that hit Houston and Florida is that American homes are not built to withstand natural disasters, especially disasters that involve enormous amounts of water. Our homes are easily damaged in any sort of flooding, which ends up soaking into the materials and destroying them.

Granted, many of the homes which were the worst hit in the hurricane are those of the poor. As such, they aren’t built according to normal American standards, but rather, in any way possible. So they are not as strong as a typical American home.

But that really doesn’t make much difference.

In a time of major disaster, we have to assume that our home will be damaged, unless you happen to live in a concrete box. With that in mind, there are two things that we should do.

The first is to be ready to make emergency repairs to our home, having the necessary tools, materials and skills on hand to accomplish those repairs. The second is to have an alternate means of shelter that we can use, if our homes become completely destroyed.

I had previously thought of using a travel trailer as my alternate shelter, in case of a hurricane destroying my home (I live in a hurricane zone as well). However, looking at the damage in Puerto Rico, it is clear that such an idea was ill-founded; a travel trailer would not survive.

It would be best to have a shelter somewhere away from your home, the classic survival retreat that we all aspire to. But if you can’t afford that, at least make sure that you have a good tent or two that you can count on.

Water

The lack of clean water in Puerto Rico is going to account for many deaths. Had those people but had some means of purifying their water, they could survive. Yet few actually did. While I have no idea how many preppers there are in Puerto Rico, it is clear that there aren’t enough.

But I see something else here as well. This is one area, in which we, as preppers, can really serve our communities, earning their respect and hopefully giving them a reason to not attack us. That is, for us to be ready to provide water filtration to those around us. For us, this is easy, as we already plan on purifying our own water. All we really need to do is increase our capacity.

Another lesson that we can take away from this is the need to be ready to harvest rainwater. While a lot of us are already using rainwater capture, we probably don’t have anywhere near the capacity needed to capture even an infinitesimal amount of the water that would fall on our homes in a hurricane. Increasing that capacity would also increase our chances of survival.

Food

With the island’s farms in a shambles, food is going to be a real challenge for the next year, with prices considerably higher than normal. While food shortages aren’t a major issue yet, they soon will be, as people and stores run out. FEMA and other relief agencies just can’t get food to the island quick enough.

This pretty much answers the question of whether or not it is unreasonable to have a year’s worth of food stockpiled. For the people of Puerto Rico, a one year supply of food seems like a minimum, right now. Those that don’t have that much (most people) are probably going to end up losing weight.

There’s something else that this disaster brings up in the food area, as well. That is, protecting your food stockpile from destruction. If my home had been in Puerto Rico for the hurricane, it looks to me like much of my food stockpile would have been damaged or even floated away. I need to rethink my food storage, looking for ways to make sure that my food stays at my home site, even if my home becomes damaged.

One way to do this is to bury some of it. Five gallon buckets, filled with food will bury just fine, protecting the food. About the only thing that could happen to it, to destroy it, would be driving a vehicle over the top.

Electric Power

As usual, the electrical grid is one of the first things damaged by any storm. Therefore, none of us can count on electricity after a disaster. We either need to be ready to do without, or to produce our own.

In this case, people who had solar panels or wind turbines probably saw them damaged by the storm. High winds can be hard on both, especially if they are not properly anchored. In that case, their preparedness wouldn’t have helped them at all.

When Hurricane Harvey was headed for my home, before turning and making landfall at Rockport, I took down my wind turbine, strapping it down behind a cement wall to protect it from the storm. Had it been up and the hurricane hit our area, I am sure that it would have been destroyed.

Medical Needs

As I mentioned above, one of the biggest problems facing the citizens of Puerto Rico is medical services and supplies. This is not uncommon in any disaster situation, as medical services tend to become overwhelmed.

But there is a big difference in this case, that is, their generators are going to prove to not be enough. When the supply of fuel is exhausted, the hospitals and all their equipment will be down.

The only medical services we can truly count on in a time of emergency are those that are already in our possession. If anything, we had better count on needing more than we thing, not less. Chances are, we’re going to find ourselves in a position where we won’t be able to count on the medical community.

Self-Defense

It didn’t take long for the two-legged predators to come out of the woodwork and start taking what they wanted. I’ve heard stories of gunmen at gas stations, threatening others so that they could get in line first. While a fairly simple example, this is indicative of what is going on in other areas as well.

As supplies become even shorter, people will become more desperate. More and more acts of violence will break forth, with people fighting over food, water and other basic necessities. Those who are not prepared to defend themselves will be the loser in this game.

FEMA

Once again, FEMA has proven that they are unprepared to deal with any emergency, especially a major one. While their workers are hard at it, trying to coordinate relief efforts, they are behind the curve. Without others pitching in to help out, FEMA will be unable to meet all the needs.

There is a stark difference between what is happening in Puerto Rico and what has happened in Houston. While I don’t have any actual figures for how much aid is reaching Puerto Rico or how much of that is from FEMA, most of it seems to be coming from FEMA or through the Red Cross. On the other hand, the large Christian community in Texas provided most of the help to the citizens of Houston. In fact, there was so much aid given by the Christian Community, that news agencies who are normally hostile to Christians commented positively about it.

Anyone who is dependent on the government to provide them with aid is asking for trouble. While government relief workers do their best, it’s never enough.

We must be ready to take care of ourselves, and if possible, those around us as well. Are you prepared?

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

North Korea At War. Are We Going In?

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In July of 1953, the Korean armistice was signed by North and South Korea, China and the United Nations Command, putting a stop to three full years of conflict.

This isn’t to say the war ended, because it really didn’t. An armistice and a peace treaty aren’t the same thing. All an armistice is, is an agreement to cease hostilities. After that, a treaty is usually negotiated and then signed. But in this case, there was no treaty.

Considering the latest events in North Korean crisis, we’re about to fight. Are we fighting the same war, or we’re going into another?

For more than a half century, all we’ve seen on the Korean peninsula is a cessation of hostilities, a pause in the war. Both sides are still fully armed, poised for battle and staring at each other across the demilitarization zone.

From time to time, the North sends incursions into the South, small unit raids across this area of no-man’s-land, proving that to them, the war isn’t really over.

Part of the reason for this lull in the war has been the North Korean obsession with becoming a nuclear power. Ever since the United States first unleashed nuclear energy in the form of a bomb, ending World War II, being a nuclear-armed country gave one entry in the world’s most exclusive club. Only the big boys had nukes and other countries who craved power and position, also craved to be part of this club.

Probably no country has put more effort into gaining membership in this exclusive club than North Korea, putting their entire country on a war footing and starving their own people, so that resources could be poured into both their nuclear program and their missile program.

 

Here’s Why We Can Never Win Against North Korea!

 

During all this time, the belligerence coming out of Pyongyang has increased. While the North Korean government has focused their hatred on three historic enemies, South Korea, Japan and the United States, they have essentially given the middle finger to the rest of the world as well.

As far as the North Koreans are concerned, the rest of the world has to accept them on their terms, essentially allowing them to have dominance over countries which are much larger, more powerful and richer than they are.

This incessant drive for power has been fueled by the rhetoric of the Kim dynasty, of which the current leader is the third to rise to power in that small country. As crazy as it might sound to us, the Kims are revered by their people, who look to them almost as gods.

They have succeeded in molding the whole country’s collective will to their desire, essentially turning the entire population into an extension of their army.

A New Cold War

North Korea’s efforts have not been in vain either. In recent months they have tested a number of newer missiles, one of which was multi-staged. According to calculations made by South Korea’s intelligence agencies, that missile has enough range to target a large part of the United States mainland.

In addition, North Korea’s nuclear weapons program has accelerated rapidly, with them recently conducting their sixth testing of a nuclear bomb. This bomb was reported by the state news agency to be a hydrogen bomb, roughly ten times more powerful than anything that the North Koreans have successfully fielded before.

This has served to merely up the ante on North Korean threats and intimidation tactics. Their most recent threat is to “sink Japan” with nuclear weapons. Whether that is nothing more than a figure of speech or whether Kim Jong-un actually thinks that the Japanese Islands are afloat is a question we will probably never see answered. Either way, it is a very real threat to one of our allies, one that can’t be ignored.

Between their threats and their rapid development of the necessary hardware to carry them out, North Korean has succeeded in doing something that no other country has been able to do, since the end of the Soviet Union… start a new cold war.

One of the theoretical basis behind the Cold War was MAD – Mutually Assured Destruction. As things sit right now with North Korea, that philosophy is back in effect. Any military attack on North Korea is bound to result in retaliatory attacks by the North Koreans, launching as many nuclear-tipped missiles as they can at Japan, South Korea and the US.

While that launch would most likely guarantee the total destruction of North Korea, it would carry a very high cost. Recent studies show that even a very minimal nuclear war with North Korea would cost a minimum of four million lives, just between the attacks launched against Seoul, South Korea and Tokyo, Japan; attacks that could very well succeed.

Anti-Missile Defenses

While we and our allies in this conflict all have anti-missile defense systems, their capabilities are limited.

For example, between Alaska and Southern California, the US has only 32 anti-ICBM missiles deployed. That number is scheduled to increase to 44 in the near future, but event that does not guarantee having overwhelming force to defend ourselves.

The real danger here is shown by statements from the Pentagon, which has said that our missile defense are sufficient against a few ICBMs, but not against a large-scale attack. Since these defenses have been in place for a long time, we can be sure that the North Korean military is aware of them, as well as being aware of their capabilities and limitations.

The limitations are something to be concerned about, as the testing they have undergone has been, like all such testing, rather contrived. In other words, until the North Koreans actually launch an ICBM towards us, with the intent of hitting one of our cities, we really don’t know how well it will work.

 

This Is What It Takes To Put Down The Entire US Grid At Once!

 

Yes, those missile systems have worked well in tests, succeeding about half the time, including the one time they were tested against an actual ICBM. But hitting an incoming ICBM is about as difficult as shooting at a bullet that’s been shot at you. The missiles are less than three meters in diameter, which is a really small target to hit with a kinetic weapon over such a huge distance.

No matter what, Kim Jong-un can overcome our missile defenses by the simple expedient of using a mass-attack. All he needs is enough missiles to fire at us, so that he can ensure that we’ll expend our defensive rockets shooting down the first wave or two. After that, we’re sitting ducks.

The situation is even worse for Japan and South Korea, mostly due to their close proximity. The THADD anti-missile system was just recently installed in South Korea and Japan doesn’t have it yet. While President Trump has indicated a willingness to sell more military hardware to both countries, in order to help them prepare for the inevitability of an attack, military hardware is expensive and those countries have to come up with the money to make the purchase.

Then, of course, there’s the problem of training the personnel who will man those weapons. Putting a new weapons system into play requires much more than just buying hardware and assigning people. The people need to be trained. While that can be done and even done fairly quickly, you can’t give them experience quickly.

That can only come with time and nobody knows how much time is available.

A Difficult Battle Problem

The threat of being on the receiving end of a nuclear attack from North Korea has become increasingly real, attracting the attention of high-ranking officials in our government and military. As we’ve already discussed, our ability to counter such an attack is somewhat limited, meaning that we, the American people, are at risk, just as our allies are.

Our government, along with the rest of the world, has been trying to use sanctions to force the North Koreans to the bargaining table, if not to quit their nuclear and missile programs altogether. However, those efforts have only served to inflame the rhetoric out of Pyongyang. It seems that there is little that diplomatic pressure can do to alter the situation.

This might be seen to some as a failure and to others as an impossibility. The ethos of the diplomatic community is to avert war at all costs. But that requires either serious discourse between all interested parties or that one side buckle under to the other. Since neither side is willing to buckle under and the North Korean government refused to come to the bargaining table, our options are rapidly dwindling. We will soon be left with no other option than open armed conflict. With nukes in the picture, that’s not an attractive option.

The logical strategy to take in that case is a preemptive attack on North Korea, taking out their nuclear and missile testing facilities. But that wouldn’t solve the problem. North Korea already has quite a number of nuclear bombs, as well as missiles of various sorts. They aren’t all in one place.

Actually, our government probably doesn’t know where the North Korean missiles are, as they are all mounted on mobile launchers. While those are more susceptible to damage than hardened underground silos, you have to find them first.

That’s not as easy as one might think. During the First Gulf War, the NRO (National Reconnaissance Office) had a bear of a time locating SCUD missiles in Iraq; and Iraq is a much more open country, with much less vegetation, than North Korea.

Unless we were able to take out all the missiles in one fell swoop, chances are that any missiles which survived would be immediately readied for attack. If they couldn’t make it across the ocean, they would at least be able to strike South Korea and Japan. Considering that the North Koreans can hit Seoul, the South Korean capital, with artillery, because it is so close to the Demilitarization Zone, hitting it with missiles wouldn’t be much of a challenge.

Video first seen on Golden State Times.

The other preemptive strike that I’m sure has been considered is to assassinate Kim Jong-un, the North Korean dictator. But that wouldn’t solve anything either; all it would do is cause some internal conflict, with top military brass jockeying for position and trying to take over the country.

Anyone in the upper echelons of the North Korean government would probably be just as bad as Kim and maybe even worse. We can safely assume that the generals surrounding Kim have more knowledge of military strategy and tactics than he does, so if any of them assumed power, they would be better suited for a retaliatory strike against us than ever.

With the North Korean people being totally behind their government, it wouldn’t take much for a popular outcry to rise up, demanding that the government launch an attack. Killing of their beloved leader would certainly cause such an outcry to come forth.

So the battle problem is much more complicated than just destroying the missiles or just destroying the nukes. We would literally have to eliminate the ability of the North Koreans to make any sort of retaliatory strike at all. That means eliminating all their nukes, all their missiles, all their leadership and destroying their military’s ability to strike at South Korea, all at the same time.

It Might Mean War

I have to say, we, the United States, as well as the rest of the free world, have kicked this problem down the road just about as far as we can. Previous administrations have tried to appease the North Koreans, hoping to prevent us being in the situation we find ourselves in.

But those efforts were clearly unsuccessful. We are now facing a situation where we are likely going to be forced into war, not because of the things that President Trump has been saying, but because of what Kim Jong-un has said.

I’m sure that there are those on the political left who would say that we should just give North Korea what they want. Those were probably some of the same voices or their ideological descendants, who thought we should give Joseph Stalin what he wanted too. The left is always quick to capitulate to evil regimes, not understanding that such a move merely encourages them to demand more.

Some tried that tactic with Hitler, as he made demands for country after country to be “given” to Germany. That caused a world war. Could this cause another such war? I doubt it.

For it to be a world war, North Korea would need other countries on their side; and right now, it appears that they don’t have any. Both Russia and China, the two countries that have traditionally backed the North Koreans, seem to be backing off from them and the danger that they represent.

China has been North Korea’s biggest ally. During the first part of the Korean War, it was the Chinese who saved the North Koreans from annihilation. Their military had all but been defeated by UN forces, under the command of General McArthur. That all changed when the Chinese came in, leading to the armistice.

Would the Chinese back North Korea again? That’s the big question. They have joined the international community in levying sanctions on the North Koreans, mostly because of pressure from the United States. But how far will that go? We might not know, until the Cold War with North Korea becomes hot again.

Looking at the alternatives, continuing a conventional war with North Korea might be preferable, as horrible an option as that may be. Even so, conventional war with them doesn’t preclude the option of them going nuclear. It could just end up being another excuse for them to press the button.

Besides that, North Korea is much better prepared to enter into a restart of conventional war now, than they were in 1950. Literally every adult in the country is part of their military, if not actively serving, than in the reserves. They aren’t all armed, like the Israelis, but are expected to pick up the arms of those who fall in battle.

How does one fight against a populace which is ready and willing to give up their lives for their leaders? Any assumption of someone being an innocent civilian has to go out the window; but that goes against the ethos of our military forces, who are trained to conserve and protect innocent lives.

Yes, we have faced such a situation before, but it is never easy, and our troops have suffered for it. They either held back and were attacked by those they thought to be innocent, or they attacked and were castigated by the press and in the courts.

It becomes a no-win situation for them, even when they win.  All we can do is support them and prepare to face whatever will come!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Do You Think You’re Financially Safe After Retirement?

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Of all the challenges facing us for retirement, financial challenges are very likely the greatest. Times have changed since our parents’ generation, and so most of us Baby Boomers don’t have the retirement packages that our parents had.

Oh, the companies we worked for might have talked a good talk, but when it comes down to it, what we thought we might get and what we will really get may not be anywhere close to the same thing.

So how are we going to make it though our retirement years?

The WHY? Question has a Simple Answer

Part of the problem is that the law has changed, affecting how companies handle retirement benefits. I distinctly remember when that happened, back in my teen years. Before that, even working for a company for a few years could qualify you for retirement. But after that, you needed a minimum of seven years to be vested at all and 20 years to be fully vested for retirement.

What does that mean? It means that if you worked for a company for seven years, you will get a minimal retirement, something like ten percent of full retirement. You have to have worked for the same company for 20 years, in order to receive a full retirement. How many of us have done that?

The truth of the matter is, it’s not just the way that employers handle things that have changed, but how we handle them as well. Few people work for a company for more than a few years, before moving on to another. What that means is that they are never fully vested for retirement in any company.

In my own career, I have worked long enough to be minimally vested in only two companies. I took a buyout for my retirement fund from the first one, as I was starting my own business and needed the money. So I only have retirement from one of those two companies; and that comes to a whopping $110 per month. Oh, and I left that company as an engineering manager, so you’d think that I would have more than that coming to me.

Many of my school chums are in even worse conditions than I am. They either didn’t have as successful a career as I did or they moved around more than I did. The result is that they have absolutely no retirement coming to them, from any company they worked for.

That’s a whole lot different than my father’s generation. He had 20 years in with one company and 15 with another. So when retirement time came around, he had some pretty good money coming in. Unlike our generation, he didn’t need to depend on Social Security for his retirement income.

 

Speaking of Social Security, you should probably take a look at your hole card and find out how much your expected benefits from Social Security are, if you haven’t already.

Currently, the maximum possible benefits from Social Security, for those who managed to rack up the maximum possible earnings for each year, including a FRA of 66 in 2017, is $2,687 a month. Not exactly something to write home about. But few people actually get that much. The average benefit paid out this year is just $1,342 a month.

Unless you have absolutely no debt and your home is paid off, that $1,300 a month isn’t going to go very far. Even if you and your spouse both receive that much a month, that’s still a touch shy of $2,700 a month; and Social Security benefits are taxable income.

Taking an Honest Look at the Cost of Retirement

The first question you have to ask yourself is how much retirement money you will have coming in. That figure includes Social Security, any retirement you have coming from companies that you’ve worked for, and any retirement funds you have saved or invested.

Sadly, few of us have much money set aside for retirement. According to the latest statistics I can find, the median average retirement savings for people 56 – 61 years old, is a mere $17,000. That’s obviously not going to go all that far.

But even if you’ve managed to beat the odds, and have a million dollars in the bank, that’s no longer enough to retire on, even though it was considered enough to retire on for decades. Assuming an annual salary of $50,000 per year (the nationwide average family income), you would have had to be putting $1,150 per month into your retirement savings, at today’s interest rates, in order to have enough for your retirement.

Of course, to do that, you probably wouldn’t have had enough to keep shoes on your kids feet and a roof over their heads. So it’s rather unlikely you managed to do anything close to that, unless you made a whole lot more money than the average.

The other side of the calculation is how much money you need to have, in order to pay your bills, once you retire.

Fortunately, your kids and mine are grown up by now, so you don’t have their expenses. So that saves a little. But most of your expenses are probably pretty much the same as they have been for a number of years, unless you’ve moved, stopped driving a car or stopped heating your home.

So sit down and write out a retirement budget. Actually, write out two of them. One should be the retirement budget that you need to have, in order to keep living like you are right now. The other should be bare bones, seeing how much you can cut out and still survive.

Don’t forget medical expenses in these two budgets. Unless you have some sort of medical plan through your work, that continues through retirement or you’re a veteran and will be taken care of (albeit not necessarily all that well) by the government, you are going to have some medical expenses. Even in retirement, Medicare will cost you something. On top of that, you may have medical expenses which Medicaid won’t cover.

There will probably be a discrepancy between how much you will have coming in and how much you need to meet your bills. That’s what you’re trying to find. You need to know how much that discrepancy is, so that you can figure out a plan for dealing with it.

One Option – Downsizing

Probably the single most common way that people deal with the discrepancy between their income and their outgo in retirement is by downsizing. Mostly this means selling their home and moving into a smaller one. That might make sense if it will save you money; but that’s not always the case.

There are really only a few ways in which selling your home to buy a smaller one can save you money:

  • You have a mortgage and downsizing will allow you to buy a home for cash. This requires having enough equity in the home to cover the cost of the smaller home.
  • Your smaller home will be less costly to heat and cool.
  • You’re moving into a camper or tiny home, that you will be able to take north in the summer and south in the winter.

Of course, downsizing doesn’t have to mean just your home.

You may have other monthly expenses that you can do without, such as car payments on large vehicles that you no longer need to have, because you are no longer hauling kids around. You might also have other expenses, which you felt you needed to have for your kids, but no longer need.

The Other Option – Increase Your Income

Unfortunately, few companies want to keep people on the payroll after they hit retirement age. Nor do most companies want to hire people who are that age. There are a number of reasons for this, but they all boil down to economics. It’s cheaper for companies to hire younger employees.

So it’s doubtful that you can find a job to increase your income. It’s not impossible, but it is doubtful. But that doesn’t mean that there’s no way that you can earn extra money to fill the gap between your expected income and your expected expenses. There are a number of things you can do; mostly things that involve being self-employed in one way or another.

There are some major advantages to being self-employed; advantages that tie in nicely with retirement. The top two are that you can set your own schedule and you can work from home. While working from home requires discipline to avoid distractions, it is generally a much more comfortable place to work.

What you ultimately decide to do will depend a lot on the skills you have, your health and how much time you decide to dedicate to work during what are supposed to be your retirement years. As always, the more skills you have, the more options you have, so a good starting point is taking an inventory of your skills, with an eye towards how you might use them to augment your income.

Without going into a lot of detail, here are some basic ideas about how you can turn your skills into cash:

  • Freelance work – There are several platforms online, which allow those who are looking to do work on contract. This is advantageous to companies, as it allow them to hire people to do work on a part-time hourly basis or by the project. All sorts of professionals and para-professionals do work via freelancing online.
  • Handicrafts – If you are a crafty sort of person, you could make craft items for sale. I know people who are making well in excess of a thousand dollars a month, monetizing their hobby. The best place to sell these crafts is through Etsy, an online store. You could also sell through local gift shops.
  • eBay or Amazon Store – Both eBay and Amazon have created amazing opportunities for those who wish to start their own business, selling just about anything online.
  • YouTube Channel – If you are an expert at something that people want to know about, start recording videos and creating a YouTube channel. There are currently thousands of these, with the top channels making millions of dollars per year, simply for the advertisements that are attached to the videos by YouTube.

These are just a few possibilities. There are many more, such as blogging, which can make money off of advertising and more starting an online store, drop shipping products to your customers. The really great thing about all these ideas, is that they require very little investment on your part, other than your time.

In the end, it’s all about the skills, as they are the only valuable that nobody can ever take away from you.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Las Vegas: The Worst Mass Shooting In US History

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As recently as last week, the worst mass shooting in US history was the terrorist-related incident that took place in the Pulse night club in Orlando, Florida. Forty-nine people were killed in that incident, a number dwarfed by the 58 people killed and more than 500 injured in at the Harvest Music Festival in Las Vegas on October 1st.

This was clearly a well thought out attack, carried out by Stephen Craig Paddock, a 64-year-old white man.

As of this time, little is known of the killer himself, who ended his own life before police could arrive to apprehend him.

However, the killer was not completely unknown in Las Vegas, where he has had several gambling transactions in the tens of thousands of dollars over the last few months. Whether those transactions were wins or losses, it appears that he might have been spending whatever money he had, before writing the final act of his life.

Just arranging the logistics of this attack destroys the idea of it being spontaneous or emotional. This was clearly a cold-blooded killer at his worst. It took time to accumulate the arms and ammo, then to move them into his shooting perch in order to be ready.

The SEAL Survival Guide to Staying Alive in the War Zone Called “New America”

A few days before the attack, the killer rented a room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, which overlooked the venue for the music festival. This gave him time to move his arsenal, which consisted of over 10 rifles, into the room and prepare for the attack.

Police have not yet revealed what those rifles were, but it is possible that he had fully-automatic weapons at his disposal. How he prevented hotel employees from having an idea of what he was up to is one of the many mysteries that the police have yet to resolve.

As the festival was underway, the killer broke open his hotel windows and opened fire on the crowd of 22,000 people below. At that distance, he probably wasn’t aiming for specific targets, but rather just shooting into the crowd to see how many people he could hit. Reports from several of the people who survived the event say that the gunfire started slow, but then accelerated to the point where it sounded like a machine gun.

Video first seen on Guardian Wires.

The distance gave him another advantage as well, as anyone who was carrying concealed would be unable to fire back at him effectively. Being on the 32nd floor means that he was 320 feet above the people he was shooting at, as well as about 400 feet away from the concert venue.

It would take a trained sniper, with a pretty good rifle and scope, to hit him from that distance.

The gunman must have expended over 700 rounds in the several minutes he was firing, as that’s how many victims there were. While some of those people may not have been hit by his shots, but rather injured in the crowd’s attempts to flee the scene, there were probably also shots that didn’t hit anyone.

Additional guns and ammo were found in his home in nearby Mesquite, Nevada.

What’s the Motivation?

It is too soon to know what motivated the killer to open fire on that crowd. Police will be investigating this incident for months, trying to track down every lead and determine what was behind the attack. One of their most important tasks in that investigation will be to determine the motive of the killer.

Nevertheless, this event has several traits in common with other mass shooting events. Specifically, we have a lone gunman who has planned out the event carefully. It is yet to be revealed whether the police found any evidence of this planning in his home, but they did find additional guns and ammo, which could be an indicator.

He also seems to be somewhat of a loner, unmarried, even though he did have a live-in girlfriend. Finally, he killed himself before the police could take him into custody, something that is extremely common in mass shootings of this type.

So, even though we don’t know yet whether he had any signs of mental illness, the possibility that this was no more than another tragic mass shooting seems rather likely. Much still needs to be done to establish that, or any other motive.

But that hasn’t stopped ISIS from taking credit for it. As they have done before, they are once again saying that this was motivated by their call for lone-wolf attacks here in the USA. This alone doesn’t prove anything, as ISIS hasn’t provided any information to back up their claim.

It could be nothing more than them trying to take credit for something that they had nothing to do with, simply to make themselves seem more formidable. If so, this wouldn’t be the first time the terrorist organization made such an unfounded claim.

There has been one witness who came forth claiming that Paddock converted to Islam a few months ago. If that is true, then it would collaborate the claim by ISIS, assuming they had something to do with his conversion. They are actively trying to recruit new converts, who they immediately try to turn into murderers.

The SEAL Survival Guide to Staying Alive in the War Zone Called “New America”

Should this be the case, it would definitely be the most effective attack that this terrorist organization has ever made on our soil. It would also be a very difficult sort of attack to counter, as our First Amendment guarantees the freedom of speech. Eliminating their ability to recruit over the internet would also hinder people’s First Amendment rights.

Democrats Jumping into Action

As always, the reactions of various groups are predictable. Democrat lawmakers are following their normal philosophy of not letting any crisis go to waste. There have already been calls for passing new legislation curtailing our Second Amendment rights.

As per usual, the proposed actions by Democrats would have done nothing to eliminate this attack, had they been in place and been perfectly enforced. But then, any “common sense” legislation they propose to deal with gun violence is the same. That’s probably because they really aren’t interested in stopping crime, but rather in disarming the population. With that as the goal, their solutions to the problem are always illogical and unfounded.

But then, everything the progressive left does is based upon emotion and not logic. They want something they can sell to their support base as a “feel good” measure. Whether or not it actually works is immaterial. If it doesn’t, they can always say that more restrictions are needed.

Hillary Clinton, who claims to have retired from politics, has given her two-cents worth as well, using this attack to condemn the Hearing Protection Act, a Republican initiative to eliminate the tight controls that currently exist on the sale of firearm suppressors. According to her “expert opinion,” more people would have been killed, if that bill had been passed.

Once again, we have a progressive liberal proving how little they know about guns. A rifle that would allow a shooter to kill at over 500 feet, as this one did, would have to fire a supersonic bullet. Suppressors, which many refer to as silencers, are not effective for supersonic rounds. Besides, once people started falling victim to the firing, it wouldn’t matter if they could hear the shots or not, people would still run from the danger, just as they did.

So, What Can be Done?

This attack presents an extremely difficult problem; both from a defensive point of view and from a legal one.

On the legal side, I wouldn’t be surprised if the shooter bought all of his firearms and ammo perfectly legally. Until we can develop a means of looking into people’s hearts and determining their future actions, there is no legal action we can take, which will eliminate their ability to do such heinous acts. Even then, the legality of such actions would be very questionable.

If the shooter did not buy his firearms legally, then the problem won’t be solved by passing more laws, at least not the ones that Democrats love to propose. Better enforcement of existing laws might help, but even then, a determined criminal will always be able to get guns. Just look at what happens in countries where guns are illegal; criminals still get their hands on guns.

What liberals really want is to repeal the laws of nature, rather than man’s laws. That’s what it would take to eliminate guns altogether; making it so that they could not work. But last I checked, no legislative body on the face of this earth has the authority to change natural laws.

On an individual basis, there is little that any of us could do to prevent being the victim of such an attack, other than to not be in such a place. Terrorists of all kinds, whether homegrown or international, prefer a “target rich environment,” where they can find the most potential victims. The only defense against that is to avoid places that would make attractive targets.

Even running is a poor defense from this sort of attack, as the killer was situated in a perch which allowed him an incredible view of his target area.

With everyone else running around to escape the venue, running would merely put you in the crowd which was being shot at. You might actually be better off staying put, allowing everyone else to run away from you and making yourself an unattractive target to go after.

I have carried concealed for years, and in this case, it would not have done me any good. There is no pistol on the market, which can shoot accurately at over 500 feet. If I were to be there and did shoot back, chances are I would end up putting a bullet through the window of someone else’s hotel room, possibly even killing them. There would be essentially no chance that I could hit the killer. For that, I would need a high-powered hunting rifle, with a good scope mounted on it.

This was a tragic event, but I doubt that it was a preventable one. As murders go, this one was just about perfect.

The only thing the killer did “wrong” was that it would be too easy to identify him. But then, he wasn’t concerned about that, as he had obviously planned on taking his own life, as the final act in this tragedy.

What you can do? Stay alert, and stay prepared!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Las Vegas: The Worst Mass Shooting In US History

As recently as last week, the worst mass shooting in US history was the terrorist-related incident that took place in the Pulse night club in Orlando, Florida. Forty-nine people were killed in that incident, a number dwarfed by the 58 people killed and more than 500 injured in at the Harvest Music Festival in Las Vegas on October 1st.

This was clearly a well thought out attack, carried out by Stephen Craig Paddock, a 64-year-old white man.

As of this time, little is known of the killer himself, who ended his own life before police could arrive to apprehend him.

However, the killer was not completely unknown in Las Vegas, where he has had several gambling transactions in the tens of thousands of dollars over the last few months. Whether those transactions were wins or losses, it appears that he might have been spending whatever money he had, before writing the final act of his life.

Just arranging the logistics of this attack destroys the idea of it being spontaneous or emotional. This was clearly a cold-blooded killer at his worst. It took time to accumulate the arms and ammo, then to move them into his shooting perch in order to be ready.

The SEAL Survival Guide to Staying Alive in the War Zone Called “New America”

A few days before the attack, the killer rented a room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, which overlooked the venue for the music festival. This gave him time to move his arsenal, which consisted of over 10 rifles, into the room and prepare for the attack.

Police have not yet revealed what those rifles were, but it is possible that he had fully-automatic weapons at his disposal. How he prevented hotel employees from having an idea of what he was up to is one of the many mysteries that the police have yet to resolve.

As the festival was underway, the killer broke open his hotel windows and opened fire on the crowd of 22,000 people below. At that distance, he probably wasn’t aiming for specific targets, but rather just shooting into the crowd to see how many people he could hit. Reports from several of the people who survived the event say that the gunfire started slow, but then accelerated to the point where it sounded like a machine gun.

Video first seen on Guardian Wires.

The distance gave him another advantage as well, as anyone who was carrying concealed would be unable to fire back at him effectively. Being on the 32nd floor means that he was 320 feet above the people he was shooting at, as well as about 400 feet away from the concert venue.

It would take a trained sniper, with a pretty good rifle and scope, to hit him from that distance.

The gunman must have expended over 700 rounds in the several minutes he was firing, as that’s how many victims there were. While some of those people may not have been hit by his shots, but rather injured in the crowd’s attempts to flee the scene, there were probably also shots that didn’t hit anyone.

Additional guns and ammo were found in his home in nearby Mesquite, Nevada.

What’s the Motivation?

It is too soon to know what motivated the killer to open fire on that crowd. Police will be investigating this incident for months, trying to track down every lead and determine what was behind the attack. One of their most important tasks in that investigation will be to determine the motive of the killer.

Nevertheless, this event has several traits in common with other mass shooting events. Specifically, we have a lone gunman who has planned out the event carefully. It is yet to be revealed whether the police found any evidence of this planning in his home, but they did find additional guns and ammo, which could be an indicator.

He also seems to be somewhat of a loner, unmarried, even though he did have a live-in girlfriend. Finally, he killed himself before the police could take him into custody, something that is extremely common in mass shootings of this type.

So, even though we don’t know yet whether he had any signs of mental illness, the possibility that this was no more than another tragic mass shooting seems rather likely. Much still needs to be done to establish that, or any other motive.

But that hasn’t stopped ISIS from taking credit for it. As they have done before, they are once again saying that this was motivated by their call for lone-wolf attacks here in the USA. This alone doesn’t prove anything, as ISIS hasn’t provided any information to back up their claim.

It could be nothing more than them trying to take credit for something that they had nothing to do with, simply to make themselves seem more formidable. If so, this wouldn’t be the first time the terrorist organization made such an unfounded claim.

There has been one witness who came forth claiming that Paddock converted to Islam a few months ago. If that is true, then it would collaborate the claim by ISIS, assuming they had something to do with his conversion. They are actively trying to recruit new converts, who they immediately try to turn into murderers.

The SEAL Survival Guide to Staying Alive in the War Zone Called “New America”

Should this be the case, it would definitely be the most effective attack that this terrorist organization has ever made on our soil. It would also be a very difficult sort of attack to counter, as our First Amendment guarantees the freedom of speech. Eliminating their ability to recruit over the internet would also hinder people’s First Amendment rights.

Democrats Jumping into Action

As always, the reactions of various groups are predictable. Democrat lawmakers are following their normal philosophy of not letting any crisis go to waste. There have already been calls for passing new legislation curtailing our Second Amendment rights.

As per usual, the proposed actions by Democrats would have done nothing to eliminate this attack, had they been in place and been perfectly enforced. But then, any “common sense” legislation they propose to deal with gun violence is the same. That’s probably because they really aren’t interested in stopping crime, but rather in disarming the population. With that as the goal, their solutions to the problem are always illogical and unfounded.

But then, everything the progressive left does is based upon emotion and not logic. They want something they can sell to their support base as a “feel good” measure. Whether or not it actually works is immaterial. If it doesn’t, they can always say that more restrictions are needed.

Hillary Clinton, who claims to have retired from politics, has given her two-cents worth as well, using this attack to condemn the Hearing Protection Act, a Republican initiative to eliminate the tight controls that currently exist on the sale of firearm suppressors. According to her “expert opinion,” more people would have been killed, if that bill had been passed.

Once again, we have a progressive liberal proving how little they know about guns. A rifle that would allow a shooter to kill at over 500 feet, as this one did, would have to fire a supersonic bullet. Suppressors, which many refer to as silencers, are not effective for supersonic rounds. Besides, once people started falling victim to the firing, it wouldn’t matter if they could hear the shots or not, people would still run from the danger, just as they did.

So, What Can be Done?

This attack presents an extremely difficult problem; both from a defensive point of view and from a legal one.

On the legal side, I wouldn’t be surprised if the shooter bought all of his firearms and ammo perfectly legally. Until we can develop a means of looking into people’s hearts and determining their future actions, there is no legal action we can take, which will eliminate their ability to do such heinous acts. Even then, the legality of such actions would be very questionable.

If the shooter did not buy his firearms legally, then the problem won’t be solved by passing more laws, at least not the ones that Democrats love to propose. Better enforcement of existing laws might help, but even then, a determined criminal will always be able to get guns. Just look at what happens in countries where guns are illegal; criminals still get their hands on guns.

What liberals really want is to repeal the laws of nature, rather than man’s laws. That’s what it would take to eliminate guns altogether; making it so that they could not work. But last I checked, no legislative body on the face of this earth has the authority to change natural laws.

On an individual basis, there is little that any of us could do to prevent being the victim of such an attack, other than to not be in such a place. Terrorists of all kinds, whether homegrown or international, prefer a “target rich environment,” where they can find the most potential victims. The only defense against that is to avoid places that would make attractive targets.

Even running is a poor defense from this sort of attack, as the killer was situated in a perch which allowed him an incredible view of his target area.

With everyone else running around to escape the venue, running would merely put you in the crowd which was being shot at. You might actually be better off staying put, allowing everyone else to run away from you and making yourself an unattractive target to go after.

I have carried concealed for years, and in this case, it would not have done me any good. There is no pistol on the market, which can shoot accurately at over 500 feet. If I were to be there and did shoot back, chances are I would end up putting a bullet through the window of someone else’s hotel room, possibly even killing them. There would be essentially no chance that I could hit the killer. For that, I would need a high-powered hunting rifle, with a good scope mounted on it.

This was a tragic event, but I doubt that it was a preventable one. As murders go, this one was just about perfect.

The only thing the killer did “wrong” was that it would be too easy to identify him. But then, he wasn’t concerned about that, as he had obviously planned on taking his own life, as the final act in this tragedy.

What you can do? Stay alert, and stay prepared!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Las Vegas: The Worst Mass Shooting In US History

As recently as last week, the worst mass shooting in US history was the terrorist-related incident that took place in the Pulse night club in Orlando, Florida. Forty-nine people were killed in that incident, a number dwarfed by the 58 people killed and more than 500 injured in at the Harvest Music Festival in Las Vegas on October 1st.

This was clearly a well thought out attack, carried out by Stephen Craig Paddock, a 64-year-old white man.

As of this time, little is known of the killer himself, who ended his own life before police could arrive to apprehend him.

However, the killer was not completely unknown in Las Vegas, where he has had several gambling transactions in the tens of thousands of dollars over the last few months. Whether those transactions were wins or losses, it appears that he might have been spending whatever money he had, before writing the final act of his life.

Just arranging the logistics of this attack destroys the idea of it being spontaneous or emotional. This was clearly a cold-blooded killer at his worst. It took time to accumulate the arms and ammo, then to move them into his shooting perch in order to be ready.

The SEAL Survival Guide to Staying Alive in the War Zone Called “New America”

A few days before the attack, the killer rented a room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel, which overlooked the venue for the music festival. This gave him time to move his arsenal, which consisted of over 10 rifles, into the room and prepare for the attack.

Police have not yet revealed what those rifles were, but it is possible that he had fully-automatic weapons at his disposal. How he prevented hotel employees from having an idea of what he was up to is one of the many mysteries that the police have yet to resolve.

As the festival was underway, the killer broke open his hotel windows and opened fire on the crowd of 22,000 people below. At that distance, he probably wasn’t aiming for specific targets, but rather just shooting into the crowd to see how many people he could hit. Reports from several of the people who survived the event say that the gunfire started slow, but then accelerated to the point where it sounded like a machine gun.

Video first seen on Guardian Wires.

The distance gave him another advantage as well, as anyone who was carrying concealed would be unable to fire back at him effectively. Being on the 32nd floor means that he was 320 feet above the people he was shooting at, as well as about 400 feet away from the concert venue.

It would take a trained sniper, with a pretty good rifle and scope, to hit him from that distance.

The gunman must have expended over 700 rounds in the several minutes he was firing, as that’s how many victims there were. While some of those people may not have been hit by his shots, but rather injured in the crowd’s attempts to flee the scene, there were probably also shots that didn’t hit anyone.

Additional guns and ammo were found in his home in nearby Mesquite, Nevada.

What’s the Motivation?

It is too soon to know what motivated the killer to open fire on that crowd. Police will be investigating this incident for months, trying to track down every lead and determine what was behind the attack. One of their most important tasks in that investigation will be to determine the motive of the killer.

Nevertheless, this event has several traits in common with other mass shooting events. Specifically, we have a lone gunman who has planned out the event carefully. It is yet to be revealed whether the police found any evidence of this planning in his home, but they did find additional guns and ammo, which could be an indicator.

He also seems to be somewhat of a loner, unmarried, even though he did have a live-in girlfriend. Finally, he killed himself before the police could take him into custody, something that is extremely common in mass shootings of this type.

So, even though we don’t know yet whether he had any signs of mental illness, the possibility that this was no more than another tragic mass shooting seems rather likely. Much still needs to be done to establish that, or any other motive.

But that hasn’t stopped ISIS from taking credit for it. As they have done before, they are once again saying that this was motivated by their call for lone-wolf attacks here in the USA. This alone doesn’t prove anything, as ISIS hasn’t provided any information to back up their claim.

It could be nothing more than them trying to take credit for something that they had nothing to do with, simply to make themselves seem more formidable. If so, this wouldn’t be the first time the terrorist organization made such an unfounded claim.

There has been one witness who came forth claiming that Paddock converted to Islam a few months ago. If that is true, then it would collaborate the claim by ISIS, assuming they had something to do with his conversion. They are actively trying to recruit new converts, who they immediately try to turn into murderers.

The SEAL Survival Guide to Staying Alive in the War Zone Called “New America”

Should this be the case, it would definitely be the most effective attack that this terrorist organization has ever made on our soil. It would also be a very difficult sort of attack to counter, as our First Amendment guarantees the freedom of speech. Eliminating their ability to recruit over the internet would also hinder people’s First Amendment rights.

Democrats Jumping into Action

As always, the reactions of various groups are predictable. Democrat lawmakers are following their normal philosophy of not letting any crisis go to waste. There have already been calls for passing new legislation curtailing our Second Amendment rights.

As per usual, the proposed actions by Democrats would have done nothing to eliminate this attack, had they been in place and been perfectly enforced. But then, any “common sense” legislation they propose to deal with gun violence is the same. That’s probably because they really aren’t interested in stopping crime, but rather in disarming the population. With that as the goal, their solutions to the problem are always illogical and unfounded.

But then, everything the progressive left does is based upon emotion and not logic. They want something they can sell to their support base as a “feel good” measure. Whether or not it actually works is immaterial. If it doesn’t, they can always say that more restrictions are needed.

Hillary Clinton, who claims to have retired from politics, has given her two-cents worth as well, using this attack to condemn the Hearing Protection Act, a Republican initiative to eliminate the tight controls that currently exist on the sale of firearm suppressors. According to her “expert opinion,” more people would have been killed, if that bill had been passed.

Once again, we have a progressive liberal proving how little they know about guns. A rifle that would allow a shooter to kill at over 500 feet, as this one did, would have to fire a supersonic bullet. Suppressors, which many refer to as silencers, are not effective for supersonic rounds. Besides, once people started falling victim to the firing, it wouldn’t matter if they could hear the shots or not, people would still run from the danger, just as they did.

So, What Can be Done?

This attack presents an extremely difficult problem; both from a defensive point of view and from a legal one.

On the legal side, I wouldn’t be surprised if the shooter bought all of his firearms and ammo perfectly legally. Until we can develop a means of looking into people’s hearts and determining their future actions, there is no legal action we can take, which will eliminate their ability to do such heinous acts. Even then, the legality of such actions would be very questionable.

If the shooter did not buy his firearms legally, then the problem won’t be solved by passing more laws, at least not the ones that Democrats love to propose. Better enforcement of existing laws might help, but even then, a determined criminal will always be able to get guns. Just look at what happens in countries where guns are illegal; criminals still get their hands on guns.

What liberals really want is to repeal the laws of nature, rather than man’s laws. That’s what it would take to eliminate guns altogether; making it so that they could not work. But last I checked, no legislative body on the face of this earth has the authority to change natural laws.

On an individual basis, there is little that any of us could do to prevent being the victim of such an attack, other than to not be in such a place. Terrorists of all kinds, whether homegrown or international, prefer a “target rich environment,” where they can find the most potential victims. The only defense against that is to avoid places that would make attractive targets.

Even running is a poor defense from this sort of attack, as the killer was situated in a perch which allowed him an incredible view of his target area.

With everyone else running around to escape the venue, running would merely put you in the crowd which was being shot at. You might actually be better off staying put, allowing everyone else to run away from you and making yourself an unattractive target to go after.

I have carried concealed for years, and in this case, it would not have done me any good. There is no pistol on the market, which can shoot accurately at over 500 feet. If I were to be there and did shoot back, chances are I would end up putting a bullet through the window of someone else’s hotel room, possibly even killing them. There would be essentially no chance that I could hit the killer. For that, I would need a high-powered hunting rifle, with a good scope mounted on it.

This was a tragic event, but I doubt that it was a preventable one. As murders go, this one was just about perfect.

The only thing the killer did “wrong” was that it would be too easy to identify him. But then, he wasn’t concerned about that, as he had obviously planned on taking his own life, as the final act in this tragedy.

What you can do? Stay alert, and stay prepared!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Retirement Prepping: How Illness Can Ruin Your Plans

Pretty much everyone looks forward to retirement. Finally getting away from the daily grind; being able to do what you want to; and not having a boss who is breathing down your back all the time are only a few of the attractions of finally getting to retire.

Some people have big plans for their retirement; while others are merely looking to settle down and watch the grass grow.

Regardless of your retirement plans, it can be an exciting time of your life. For many, this is the chance to do things they couldn’t do when their kids were growing up. For others, their jobs got in the way. But regardless of what your ultimate plans are, you want to be able to make the most of those years, not to spend them worrying about money.

But sadly, reality is often much different than our dreams. As we age, our bodies suffer. Some of this is self-induced, by not taking care of ourselves when we are younger; but the vast majority happens to us for no rhyme or reason, just because we are getting older.

Way too many people have their retirement plans destroyed by illnesses of one sort or another.

It’s bad enough having to put up with that illness, but what makes it worse, is having your life’s savings destroyed by the medical industry mugging you every time you need something. Today’s medical costs are outrageous, structured for insurance and Medicare to cover; so they can move you to the poorhouse, if you’re not ready for them.

Here are some ways that you can save on your own medical costs, reducing the “sticker shock” of going to the doctor or hospital.

Get in Shape

Many of the medical conditions that people suffer from in their latter years are self-inflicted. Specifically, they’re inflicted on us by our diets.

High blood pressure, high cholesterol and high blood sugar are directly related to poor diet and exercise. Our ancestors didn’t suffer from these problems as much as we do, mostly because they were more active. Their work required them to move around physically, rather than sitting in front of a computer all day.

 

Doctors won’t be there to save you! This guide will tell you what to do instead!

 

I’m currently on a diet, in which I have lost 50 pounds. I still have another 50 to go, so that I can reach my target weight. If I actually reach it, I will be down to the same weight that I had at 40. That will put less strain on my legs, less strain on my back and less strain on my heart. I’m also hoping it will help to bring down my cholesterol and blood sugar, eliminating those problem areas.

Of course, the other part of this is exercise. A good exercise regime doesn’t mean that you have to become a body builder. Rather, it means that you have something you do, which raises your heart rate and helps you burn off calories. At the same time, it will help you to improve your muscle tone, which will help reduce stress on joints and ligaments.

Go Natural

I have to confess that I’ve never been a big believer in eating healthy. That is, until my doctor told me that I had high blood pressure, high blood sugar and high cholesterol. That changed my thinking a bit. My choices were to change my diet or end up in a lot of problems. I chose to change my diet.

Sadly, few people follow in that example. They are unwilling to give up something they like, just to have good health. When they do that though, they’re saying that they’ll accept the bad health.

I didn’t want that. I have things I want to do with the rest of my life, and I can’t do them if I’m stuck in a wheelchair or can’t walk around without a walker to help me.

When I say “go natural,” I’m not really talking about becoming a health food nut. What I’m talking about is cutting down on processed foods and eating the things that don’t have as many chemicals in them.

In other words, when you go into the grocery store, do your shopping around the fringe, not in the aisles.

Natural Means Medicine Too

But there’s another side of this too; that’s medicine. Most new medicines are horribly expensive, especially medicines for treating cancer. The American pharmaceutical industry is dumping billions into research and passing those bills on to their customers. So if you have anything seriously wrong with you, the cost of the medications is enormous.

We need to keep in mind that the goal of the pharmaceutical industry isn’t to cure people of what ails them, but to get their money. So they’d rather develop drugs that keep you alive, controlling whatever medical condition you have, than make you well, eliminating the problem.

On the other hand, there’s natural medicine, sometimes referred to as herbal medicine. Now, I know there are a lot of quacks in the herbal medicine realm, but there is also a lot of truth.

I have had friends who have been cured of cancer with herbal treatments. If the right sorts of foods and herbs can cure cancer, which medical science still doesn’t have a cure for, then I’m willing to try it.

Besides, all of the medicines that pharmaceutical laboratories produce originally come from nature. The scientists working for those companies look for chemicals in nature, which can treat various illnesses.

Then they develop a way of producing something that’s just about the same, which will provide them with the same results, but created artificially. They do this, because you can’t patent something that you get from nature. So to protect their discovery, it has to be artificial.

Of course, many of those artificial solutions have other problems associated with them as well. We call them “side-effects,” some of which can be quite serious. Using natural solutions usually eliminates those, providing a much better solution.

Don’t Accept Everything the Doctors Say

Most of us accept whatever the doctor says, almost without question. In doing so, we become lab rats for whatever sorts of experiments they want to conduct on us. Not only that, but we pay them to use us like lab rats. Doesn’t sound like a very good deal to me.

A moment ago I mentioned friends who have been cured of cancer. I’ve also had friends and family members who have died from it. While I don’t want to start any conspiracy theories here, every one of those who died of cancer followed the advice of their doctor, rather than trying a more natural means of dealing with their illness.

I don’t know about you, but on general principles I don’t like the idea of feeding someone poisons, just to kill cancer. But that’s exactly what chemotherapy is. The idea is that the poisons will kill the cancer faster than it will kill them.

Then there’s radiation therapy. Once again, the idea is to kill cells. By targeting the cancer with the radiation, they try to limit the number of other cells that are killed. But gamma rays kill every cell they pass through; so once again, it’s an attempt to kill the cancer, faster than killing the patient.

My father-in-law ended up dying of lung cancer. But they didn’t discover it until it was stage four. By then, it was too late for the doctors to do much of anything. From the time they discovered the cancer, till the time he died, was about six months.

My sister-in-law struggled with that. She lived close to them and was the one who tried to take care of them. So in her mind, she had failed her father, not forcing him to go to the doctor and get checked for cancer. But in reality what she did was to give him two years of peace, in which he was able to enjoy his life, rather than put up with the pain and rigors of chemotherapy and radiation therapy.

Make your own decisions; don’t let the doctor make them for you.

This may sound cruel, but if you’re going to die anyway, why make your last year or two be years of suffering? Isn’t it better to be able to enjoy them?

Give Your Assets Away

You’ve paid for Medicare all your life, right? So it’s reasonable to expect that Medicare will pay for your expenses once you retire. That’s true… at least to a point.

The problem is, Medicare, like other “entitlement programs” is deeply interested in your bank balance. If you have too much, you either have to pay your medical bills yourself or pay back the government for paying for your medical bills.

What this means is that anyone who has done what financial planners say and has their million dollars in the bank to retire on, suddenly finds themselves saddled with their own medical costs, at a time in their life when those costs are the highest they have ever been.

I’ve seen a number of people whose medical bills ate up their entire life’s savings, even the value of their home. After pinching and scraping to make it through life and maybe leave a little to their kids, the doctors and the hospitals get it all.

There’s a simple solution to this problem though, assuming you trust your kids. That is, give them everything now, before you run up those high medical bills. Sign the house over to them, empty your savings account and sell your stocks. Then, live off of Social Security and whatever “gifts” your children give you out of that money.

In other words, have them give you a regular stipend so you can pay your bills, but keep your bank account empty.

Medical Tourism

One of the best things you can do to reduce medical costs is go somewhere else. That sounds overly simplistic, but it works. There are many cases where you can get your medical needs met for a whole lot less than what you’d have to pay here in the USA.

Granted this won’t work for emergency medical treatments. Those don’t give you the opportunity to make travel arrangements to go overseas somewhere. But for things that can be scheduled, like getting a root canal and crown on a tooth, you can save enough money going to some places overseas, to cover the cost of the trip.

I live just a few miles from Mexico and go there for pretty much all my medical needs. We even have a private hospital we go to, for times when we need more than just a trip to the doctor’s office. There are actually a lot of doctors, dentists and pharmacies in the border towns, which are there to cater to the medical needs of Americans.

The average root canal costs $700 for a front tooth and $900 for a molar in the United States. Crowns cost anywhere from $875 to as much as $3,000 per tooth. In comparison, both crowns and root canals cost $200 each in the Mexican border towns near me; and they’re just as good as American ones.

Medicines are much cheaper too. I know a fair number of retired people who come down here once a year, just to buy their medicines. While it’s much harder to give a price comparison for medicines, what I’ve seen ranges from 25% of the American price, all the way down to 10%.

The problem is with newer medicines, which may not be available in Mexico. But any standard medication is much cheaper.

You can also order medications online from Canadian pharmaceutical houses. While the prices aren’t as low as they are in Mexico, they are still considerably lower than they are here in the USA.

So, whether you travel to another country or simply use the internet to find what you need, you can save a small fortune in medical costs, simply by looking outside of our borders.

Survival

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Retirement Prepping: How Illness Can Ruin Your Plans

Click here to view the original post.

Pretty much everyone looks forward to retirement. Finally getting away from the daily grind; being able to do what you want to; and not having a boss who is breathing down your back all the time are only a few of the attractions of finally getting to retire.

Some people have big plans for their retirement; while others are merely looking to settle down and watch the grass grow.

Regardless of your retirement plans, it can be an exciting time of your life. For many, this is the chance to do things they couldn’t do when their kids were growing up. For others, their jobs got in the way. But regardless of what your ultimate plans are, you want to be able to make the most of those years, not to spend them worrying about money.

But sadly, reality is often much different than our dreams. As we age, our bodies suffer. Some of this is self-induced, by not taking care of ourselves when we are younger; but the vast majority happens to us for no rhyme or reason, just because we are getting older.

Way too many people have their retirement plans destroyed by illnesses of one sort or another.

It’s bad enough having to put up with that illness, but what makes it worse, is having your life’s savings destroyed by the medical industry mugging you every time you need something. Today’s medical costs are outrageous, structured for insurance and Medicare to cover; so they can move you to the poorhouse, if you’re not ready for them.

Here are some ways that you can save on your own medical costs, reducing the “sticker shock” of going to the doctor or hospital.

Get in Shape

Many of the medical conditions that people suffer from in their latter years are self-inflicted. Specifically, they’re inflicted on us by our diets.

High blood pressure, high cholesterol and high blood sugar are directly related to poor diet and exercise. Our ancestors didn’t suffer from these problems as much as we do, mostly because they were more active. Their work required them to move around physically, rather than sitting in front of a computer all day.

I’m currently on a diet, in which I have lost 50 pounds. I still have another 50 to go, so that I can reach my target weight. If I actually reach it, I will be down to the same weight that I had at 40. That will put less strain on my legs, less strain on my back and less strain on my heart. I’m also hoping it will help to bring down my cholesterol and blood sugar, eliminating those problem areas.

Of course, the other part of this is exercise. A good exercise regime doesn’t mean that you have to become a body builder. Rather, it means that you have something you do, which raises your heart rate and helps you burn off calories. At the same time, it will help you to improve your muscle tone, which will help reduce stress on joints and ligaments.

Go Natural

I have to confess that I’ve never been a big believer in eating healthy. That is, until my doctor told me that I had high blood pressure, high blood sugar and high cholesterol. That changed my thinking a bit. My choices were to change my diet or end up in a lot of problems. I chose to change my diet.

Sadly, few people follow in that example. They are unwilling to give up something they like, just to have good health. When they do that though, they’re saying that they’ll accept the bad health.

I didn’t want that. I have things I want to do with the rest of my life, and I can’t do them if I’m stuck in a wheelchair or can’t walk around without a walker to help me.

Boil this plant to get the most powerful painkiller! It literally grows everywhere!

When I say “go natural,” I’m not really talking about becoming a health food nut. What I’m talking about is cutting down on processed foods and eating the things that don’t have as many chemicals in them.

In other words, when you go into the grocery store, do your shopping around the fringe, not in the aisles.

Natural Means Medicine Too

But there’s another side of this too; that’s medicine. Most new medicines are horribly expensive, especially medicines for treating cancer. The American pharmaceutical industry is dumping billions into research and passing those bills on to their customers. So if you have anything seriously wrong with you, the cost of the medications is enormous.

We need to keep in mind that the goal of the pharmaceutical industry isn’t to cure people of what ails them, but to get their money. So they’d rather develop drugs that keep you alive, controlling whatever medical condition you have, than make you well, eliminating the problem.

On the other hand, there’s natural medicine, sometimes referred to as herbal medicine. Now, I know there are a lot of quacks in the herbal medicine realm, but there is also a lot of truth.

I have had friends who have been cured of cancer with herbal treatments. If the right sorts of foods and herbs can cure cancer, which medical science still doesn’t have a cure for, then I’m willing to try it.

Besides, all of the medicines that pharmaceutical laboratories produce originally come from nature. The scientists working for those companies look for chemicals in nature, which can treat various illnesses.

Then they develop a way of producing something that’s just about the same, which will provide them with the same results, but created artificially. They do this, because you can’t patent something that you get from nature. So to protect their discovery, it has to be artificial.

Of course, many of those artificial solutions have other problems associated with them as well. We call them “side-effects,” some of which can be quite serious. Using natural solutions usually eliminates those, providing a much better solution.

Don’t Accept Everything the Doctors Say

Most of us accept whatever the doctor says, almost without question. In doing so, we become lab rats for whatever sorts of experiments they want to conduct on us. Not only that, but we pay them to use us like lab rats. Doesn’t sound like a very good deal to me.

A moment ago I mentioned friends who have been cured of cancer. I’ve also had friends and family members who have died from it. While I don’t want to start any conspiracy theories here, every one of those who died of cancer followed the advice of their doctor, rather than trying a more natural means of dealing with their illness.

I don’t know about you, but on general principles I don’t like the idea of feeding someone poisons, just to kill cancer. But that’s exactly what chemotherapy is. The idea is that the poisons will kill the cancer faster than it will kill them.

Then there’s radiation therapy. Once again, the idea is to kill cells. By targeting the cancer with the radiation, they try to limit the number of other cells that are killed. But gamma rays kill every cell they pass through; so once again, it’s an attempt to kill the cancer, faster than killing the patient.

My father-in-law ended up dying of lung cancer. But they didn’t discover it until it was stage four. By then, it was too late for the doctors to do much of anything. From the time they discovered the cancer, till the time he died, was about six months.

My sister-in-law struggled with that. She lived close to them and was the one who tried to take care of them. So in her mind, she had failed her father, not forcing him to go to the doctor and get checked for cancer. But in reality what she did was to give him two years of peace, in which he was able to enjoy his life, rather than put up with the pain and rigors of chemotherapy and radiation therapy.

Make your own decisions; don’t let the doctor make them for you.

This may sound cruel, but if you’re going to die anyway, why make your last year or two be years of suffering? Isn’t it better to be able to enjoy them?

Give Your Assets Away

You’ve paid for Medicare all your life, right? So it’s reasonable to expect that Medicare will pay for your expenses once you retire. That’s true… at least to a point.

The problem is, Medicare, like other “entitlement programs” is deeply interested in your bank balance. If you have too much, you either have to pay your medical bills yourself or pay back the government for paying for your medical bills.

What this means is that anyone who has done what financial planners say and has their million dollars in the bank to retire on, suddenly finds themselves saddled with their own medical costs, at a time in their life when those costs are the highest they have ever been.

I’ve seen a number of people whose medical bills ate up their entire life’s savings, even the value of their home. After pinching and scraping to make it through life and maybe leave a little to their kids, the doctors and the hospitals get it all.

There’s a simple solution to this problem though, assuming you trust your kids. That is, give them everything now, before you run up those high medical bills. Sign the house over to them, empty your savings account and sell your stocks. Then, live off of Social Security and whatever “gifts” your children give you out of that money.

In other words, have them give you a regular stipend so you can pay your bills, but keep your bank account empty.

Medical Tourism

One of the best things you can do to reduce medical costs is go somewhere else. That sounds overly simplistic, but it works. There are many cases where you can get your medical needs met for a whole lot less than what you’d have to pay here in the USA.

Granted this won’t work for emergency medical treatments. Those don’t give you the opportunity to make travel arrangements to go overseas somewhere. But for things that can be scheduled, like getting a root canal and crown on a tooth, you can save enough money going to some places overseas, to cover the cost of the trip.

I live just a few miles from Mexico and go there for pretty much all my medical needs. We even have a private hospital we go to, for times when we need more than just a trip to the doctor’s office. There are actually a lot of doctors, dentists and pharmacies in the border towns, which are there to cater to the medical needs of Americans.

The average root canal costs $700 for a front tooth and $900 for a molar in the United States. Crowns cost anywhere from $875 to as much as $3,000 per tooth. In comparison, both crowns and root canals cost $200 each in the Mexican border towns near me; and they’re just as good as American ones.

Medicines are much cheaper too. I know a fair number of retired people who come down here once a year, just to buy their medicines. While it’s much harder to give a price comparison for medicines, what I’ve seen ranges from 25% of the American price, all the way down to 10%.

The problem is with newer medicines, which may not be available in Mexico. But any standard medication is much cheaper.

You can also order medications online from Canadian pharmaceutical houses. While the prices aren’t as low as they are in Mexico, they are still considerably lower than they are here in the USA.

So, whether you travel to another country or simply use the internet to find what you need, you can save a small fortune in medical costs, simply by looking outside of our borders.

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Latest On North Korea: Is Nuclear Disaster On the Horizon?

Angry rhetoric has been flying back and forth across the Pacific Ocean, between Washington, DC and Pyongyang, North Korea. North Korea’s oft-spoken threats to destroy the United States has been repeated, ad nauseam, but are now being repeated back by President Trump.

Perhaps the North Korean leadership isn’t used to Americans who know how to talk tough, but it’s time that they learned.

Trump’s latest name for Kim Jong-un, “Rocket Man” is apparently gaining some steam within the diplomatic community, where it has been repeated by a number of ambassadors to the United Nations. While the US has borne the brunt of the hatred from the hermit kingdom, it appears that the nations of the world are united in recognizing the threat that he Kim regime is to all peace-loving people, everywhere.

This Conflict Isn’t New

The hatred out of Pyongyang is nothing new; it has been around since the creation of North Korea and the foundation of the Kim dynasty.

 

Here’s Why We Can Never Win Against North Korea

 

At the end of World War II, in 1948, the Korean peninsula was divided, just like Germany was, and the Iron Curtain descended over Korea. The Soviet Union placed Kim Il-sung, the current dictator’s grandfather, in power, mostly because he was a dedicated communist.

Immediately, the elderly Kim stated the goal of reuniting the Korean peninsula, brining the South Koreans under his rule. The North Korean hatred for the United States stems from there; for it was our protection of South Korea that has prevented the fulfillment of this dream.

Two short years later, then Secretary of State, Dean Acheson, gave a speech at the National Press Club. In this speech, Acheson made reference to several nations and islands as being critical to the “US defensive perimeter.” South Korea and Taiwan were clearly absent from that perimeter. This was misunderstood by the Russians, the Chinese and the North Koreans to mean that we would not go to war to protect North Korea, leading to the Korean War.

Two weeks after that ill-fated speech, Moscow gave the green light for the North Koreans to attack the South. On June 25th of that year, behind a massive artillery bombardment, the North Korean Army began to move, all but conquering South Korea. American and South Korean forces were forced back to the Pusan perimeter, from where their counterattack began.

US led UN forces advanced nearly to the Korea/China border, even reaching the Yalu River (the dividing line between North Korea and China) at one point. But this was too close for the Chinese government, who counterattacked, driving the combined UN forces back to somewhere near the 38th Parallel, the original (and once again agreed upon) dividing line between north and south.

If anything, this war inflamed the North Korean hatred for the USA, as the UN forces were predominantly American. In the eyes of the North Koreans, it was the US, not necessarily the UN, who defeated them and prevented the reunification of Korea under communist rule.

North Korean rhetoric against the United States began in this time period and has continued non-stop since then.

The only real difference between the angry rhetoric of a decade or four ago and the rhetoric of today, is that is seems like the North Korean government is finally reaching the point of being able to follow through on the threats they are making.

Video first seen on Trump Dayz.

Is There a Way Out?

Some people have accused the current tensions on President Trump, blaming him for escalating the current situation. Those people are predictably on the political left, where the idea of appeasement is much more palatable than standing on our own two feet.

This was Obama’s foreign policy and it has led to both North Korea and Iran being much closer to being able to attack us with nuclear arms.

Apparently those on the left are unaware of North Korea’s history and their attack on South Korea in 1950. For that matter, they probably have no idea of how poorly appeasement worked to stop Germany at the beginning of World War II.

If appeasement would work, North Korea should be the most peaceful nation on the face of the Earth.

Declarations of War

Beneath all of the rhetoric, the North Korean dictator, Kim Jong-un, clearly declared war on the United States in 2016. This is not surprising, nor does it really change things. The Korean peninsula has been at war since 1950. All that was signed in 1953 was an armistice, not a peace agreement. In fact, there has never been a peace agreement between the north and the south.

There have been sporadic incursions into South Korea by the north, as well as shots fired across the demilitarization zone and a number of skirmishes. So a declaration of war really isn’t necessary; it already exists. Any such declaration issued today would merely be political posturing, nothing more.

As I write this, a notice has come across my desk, saying that the North Korean Foreign Minister, Ri Yong-ho is publically stating that Donald Trump has declared war against his country. In doing this, he is taking one of Trump’s infamous tweets and turning it into a declaration of war.

If Foreign Minister Ri has anyone on his staff that has any knowledge of American law, he would know that the US President can’t make a declaration of war. That has to come out of Congress. But then, waiting for Congress to declare war wouldn’t fit the image they want to portray of Trump war-mongering and them being the innocent victim.

North Korea’s Advances

The North Koreans have been working on their nuclear program for at least 30 years, although the exact date is not known. Their first nuclear test was conducted on October 9, 2006, nearly 11 years ago. Their missile program is even older, starting in 1976, with the Soviet Scud-B missile as their base.

Just a couple of months ago, the North Koreans fired their first multi-stage missile, giving them the capability of reaching the US mainland, at least in theory.

Then, on September 3rd, they had a major underground nuclear weapons test, reputed to be their first hydrogen bomb. Whether it was a hydrogen bomb or not, based upon seismic data, it was a full order of magnitude larger than anything they had done before.

Then, a report came to light, which was actually created during Obama’s presidency.

 

America is Marching Blindly in the Greatest Trap Ever Set

 

This devastating report blew away the comments that had been made about the North Koreans needing to miniaturize their nuclear bombs. According to the report, their nuclear program had been working along that vein all along, so every North Korean nuclear weapon is already miniaturized and can be fitted to a missile.

So, where does this leave us? It appears that North Korea is on the verge of being able to field actual nuclear-tipped ICBMs, which are capable of reaching the US mainland. While I am sure there are still technical issues that need to be overcome, the issues that are left are child’s play, in comparison to what they have already accomplished.

Anyone who talks about how the North Koreans can’t yet field a nuclear missile that is capable of attacking the United States needs to take a reality pill and quit living in a world of denial.

The very facts that they have a nuclear weapon as powerful as they do and missiles which can reach our shores are grave enough that we should be concerned. Solving the problem of reentry heat is minimal and whether or not their aiming is accurate may not be an issue at all, especially if they decide to attack with an EMP.

Many have written about the possibility of an EMP, but now the North Korean state news agency is talking about it as well. While that may be nothing more than more propaganda to maintain the support of the people, I’m sure that some planner in the military is developing the plans for such an attack.

If They Should Attack

The big question facing the United States today, is what if they attack? With the rhetoric between Washington and Pyongyang heating up, there is a distinct possibility of then launching an attack. While I personally thing that would be a suicide move on their part, I can’t deny the possibility.

The most obvious option for our government to take is to eliminate their nuclear capability with a preemptive strike. But that’s easier said than done. All of North Korea’s missiles are apparently mounted on mobile launchers. So chances are, we don’t know where they all are.

Tracking mobile missiles is not easy, even with satellites, regardless of how easy Hollywood makes it seem. As the NRO discovered in the First Gulf War, it’s not hard to hide something the size of a mobile missile launcher in an area the size of a country.

Were we to attempt such an attack and fail, chances are high that Kim Jong-un would order the remaining missiles to attack the USA. Those that couldn’t reach the US would be targeted at our other vital interests, such as Hawaii, Guam, South Korea, Japan and out fleet off his shore.

Our other main option is to wait for them to attack first. If that should happen, we have enough nuclear capability to turn their country into a parking lot. But that’s not actually our biggest concern. While I’m sure that we would respond with some sort of counterattack, that wouldn’t affect your and my lives, nor those of our families.

What would affect our lives is our ability to stop that counterstrike before it reached us. That‘s the big question; whether or not we could effectively do that. Any ICBM launched from North Korea would most likely fly over Alaska or Southern California, where we have considerable anti-missile forces stationed. Whether or not they would be able to stop such an attack is up for debate.

Our military’s latest anti-ballistic missiles boast some impressive records, at least in their ability to counter test attacks. However, those are just tests and no matter how well tests are created, they are still somewhat contrived. The only real test for those weapons is for someone to attack us. Fortunately, that hasn’t yet happened.

This means that we are trusting our safety to largely unproven systems. Worse than that, the older systems don’t have as impressive a record as the newer ones do. So, there’s always the possibility that some of those won’t work. If the attack comes in such a way as to necessitate a response by those defensive weapons, it’s hard to say how effective our defenses will actually be.

It’s Time to Prepare

Officials in South Korea, Japan, Guam and Hawaii are all telling their citizens to prepare for a possible nuclear attack. This may seem a bit strange to our younger generation, but I grew up under nuclear threat. I still remember the drills in elementary school, when we were taught to “duck and cover,” as well as taught where our fallout shelters were.

I actually got my start as a survivalist during the Cold War, due to the threat of thermonuclear war. This is no different. Right now, we are in another cold war; but this one is with North Korea, not the Soviet Union. While we are much bigger than North Korea, with a much larger military and many more nuclear weapons, the other side has the advantage. That’s simply because the madman dictator on the other side can launch a nuclear attack on his own, without worry about congressional oversight or the risk of impeachment.

You can be sure that Kim Jong-un has well prepared bunkers to retreat to, when he pushes the button, launching a nuclear war with the United States. His people might die, but then, he hasn’t shown much compassion towards them anyway. I seriously doubt that it would bother him much.

Communist governments tend to look at the people as little more than peasants to be used and discarded, as their “betters” in the government so choose. Why should we think that Kim will be any different? He is already starving his population, so that he can spend his nation’s wealth on building a nuclear arsenal, proving how little he cares for them.

North Korea has already threatened Guam. They’ve sent ballistic missiles over Japan’s airspace. They haven’t said a thing about Hawaii yet, but it’s another obvious target.

In fact, the Hawaiian state legislature just received a highly secretive briefing about preparing for a nuclear attack. Information about what was covered in the briefing hasn’t yet leaked out, but it was definitely about making preparations, should a nuclear attack come.

While this briefing was declared to not be associated with things going on in North Korea, I seriously doubt anyone believes that. The only real nuclear threat today is North Korea; Iran isn’t ready yet. So, even if it is coincidental, in the sense that it is something that is scheduled to happen every X years, I am sure that North Korea was the focus.

As it doesn’t look like tensions between the United States and North Korea are likely to subside anytime soon, you and I should be preparing as well.

We could very well find ourselves living in the aftermath of an EMP, without any warning that it is to come.

This articles has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Latest On North Korea: Is Nuclear Disaster On the Horizon?

Angry rhetoric has been flying back and forth across the Pacific Ocean, between Washington, DC and Pyongyang, North Korea. North Korea’s oft-spoken threats to destroy the United States has been repeated, ad nauseam, but are now being repeated back by President Trump.

Perhaps the North Korean leadership isn’t used to Americans who know how to talk tough, but it’s time that they learned.

Trump’s latest name for Kim Jong-un, “Rocket Man” is apparently gaining some steam within the diplomatic community, where it has been repeated by a number of ambassadors to the United Nations. While the US has borne the brunt of the hatred from the hermit kingdom, it appears that the nations of the world are united in recognizing the threat that he Kim regime is to all peace-loving people, everywhere.

This Conflict Isn’t New

The hatred out of Pyongyang is nothing new; it has been around since the creation of North Korea and the foundation of the Kim dynasty.

 

Here’s Why We Can Never Win Against North Korea

 

At the end of World War II, in 1948, the Korean peninsula was divided, just like Germany was, and the Iron Curtain descended over Korea. The Soviet Union placed Kim Il-sung, the current dictator’s grandfather, in power, mostly because he was a dedicated communist.

Immediately, the elderly Kim stated the goal of reuniting the Korean peninsula, brining the South Koreans under his rule. The North Korean hatred for the United States stems from there; for it was our protection of South Korea that has prevented the fulfillment of this dream.

Two short years later, then Secretary of State, Dean Acheson, gave a speech at the National Press Club. In this speech, Acheson made reference to several nations and islands as being critical to the “US defensive perimeter.” South Korea and Taiwan were clearly absent from that perimeter. This was misunderstood by the Russians, the Chinese and the North Koreans to mean that we would not go to war to protect North Korea, leading to the Korean War.

Two weeks after that ill-fated speech, Moscow gave the green light for the North Koreans to attack the South. On June 25th of that year, behind a massive artillery bombardment, the North Korean Army began to move, all but conquering South Korea. American and South Korean forces were forced back to the Pusan perimeter, from where their counterattack began.

US led UN forces advanced nearly to the Korea/China border, even reaching the Yalu River (the dividing line between North Korea and China) at one point. But this was too close for the Chinese government, who counterattacked, driving the combined UN forces back to somewhere near the 38th Parallel, the original (and once again agreed upon) dividing line between north and south.

If anything, this war inflamed the North Korean hatred for the USA, as the UN forces were predominantly American. In the eyes of the North Koreans, it was the US, not necessarily the UN, who defeated them and prevented the reunification of Korea under communist rule.

North Korean rhetoric against the United States began in this time period and has continued non-stop since then.

The only real difference between the angry rhetoric of a decade or four ago and the rhetoric of today, is that is seems like the North Korean government is finally reaching the point of being able to follow through on the threats they are making.

Video first seen on Trump Dayz.

Is There a Way Out?

Some people have accused the current tensions on President Trump, blaming him for escalating the current situation. Those people are predictably on the political left, where the idea of appeasement is much more palatable than standing on our own two feet.

This was Obama’s foreign policy and it has led to both North Korea and Iran being much closer to being able to attack us with nuclear arms.

Apparently those on the left are unaware of North Korea’s history and their attack on South Korea in 1950. For that matter, they probably have no idea of how poorly appeasement worked to stop Germany at the beginning of World War II.

If appeasement would work, North Korea should be the most peaceful nation on the face of the Earth.

Declarations of War

Beneath all of the rhetoric, the North Korean dictator, Kim Jong-un, clearly declared war on the United States in 2016. This is not surprising, nor does it really change things. The Korean peninsula has been at war since 1950. All that was signed in 1953 was an armistice, not a peace agreement. In fact, there has never been a peace agreement between the north and the south.

There have been sporadic incursions into South Korea by the north, as well as shots fired across the demilitarization zone and a number of skirmishes. So a declaration of war really isn’t necessary; it already exists. Any such declaration issued today would merely be political posturing, nothing more.

As I write this, a notice has come across my desk, saying that the North Korean Foreign Minister, Ri Yong-ho is publically stating that Donald Trump has declared war against his country. In doing this, he is taking one of Trump’s infamous tweets and turning it into a declaration of war.

If Foreign Minister Ri has anyone on his staff that has any knowledge of American law, he would know that the US President can’t make a declaration of war. That has to come out of Congress. But then, waiting for Congress to declare war wouldn’t fit the image they want to portray of Trump war-mongering and them being the innocent victim.

North Korea’s Advances

The North Koreans have been working on their nuclear program for at least 30 years, although the exact date is not known. Their first nuclear test was conducted on October 9, 2006, nearly 11 years ago. Their missile program is even older, starting in 1976, with the Soviet Scud-B missile as their base.

Just a couple of months ago, the North Koreans fired their first multi-stage missile, giving them the capability of reaching the US mainland, at least in theory.

Then, on September 3rd, they had a major underground nuclear weapons test, reputed to be their first hydrogen bomb. Whether it was a hydrogen bomb or not, based upon seismic data, it was a full order of magnitude larger than anything they had done before.

Then, a report came to light, which was actually created during Obama’s presidency.

 

America is Marching Blindly in the Greatest Trap Ever Set

 

This devastating report blew away the comments that had been made about the North Koreans needing to miniaturize their nuclear bombs. According to the report, their nuclear program had been working along that vein all along, so every North Korean nuclear weapon is already miniaturized and can be fitted to a missile.

So, where does this leave us? It appears that North Korea is on the verge of being able to field actual nuclear-tipped ICBMs, which are capable of reaching the US mainland. While I am sure there are still technical issues that need to be overcome, the issues that are left are child’s play, in comparison to what they have already accomplished.

Anyone who talks about how the North Koreans can’t yet field a nuclear missile that is capable of attacking the United States needs to take a reality pill and quit living in a world of denial.

The very facts that they have a nuclear weapon as powerful as they do and missiles which can reach our shores are grave enough that we should be concerned. Solving the problem of reentry heat is minimal and whether or not their aiming is accurate may not be an issue at all, especially if they decide to attack with an EMP.

Many have written about the possibility of an EMP, but now the North Korean state news agency is talking about it as well. While that may be nothing more than more propaganda to maintain the support of the people, I’m sure that some planner in the military is developing the plans for such an attack.

If They Should Attack

The big question facing the United States today, is what if they attack? With the rhetoric between Washington and Pyongyang heating up, there is a distinct possibility of then launching an attack. While I personally thing that would be a suicide move on their part, I can’t deny the possibility.

The most obvious option for our government to take is to eliminate their nuclear capability with a preemptive strike. But that’s easier said than done. All of North Korea’s missiles are apparently mounted on mobile launchers. So chances are, we don’t know where they all are.

Tracking mobile missiles is not easy, even with satellites, regardless of how easy Hollywood makes it seem. As the NRO discovered in the First Gulf War, it’s not hard to hide something the size of a mobile missile launcher in an area the size of a country.

Were we to attempt such an attack and fail, chances are high that Kim Jong-un would order the remaining missiles to attack the USA. Those that couldn’t reach the US would be targeted at our other vital interests, such as Hawaii, Guam, South Korea, Japan and out fleet off his shore.

Our other main option is to wait for them to attack first. If that should happen, we have enough nuclear capability to turn their country into a parking lot. But that’s not actually our biggest concern. While I’m sure that we would respond with some sort of counterattack, that wouldn’t affect your and my lives, nor those of our families.

What would affect our lives is our ability to stop that counterstrike before it reached us. That‘s the big question; whether or not we could effectively do that. Any ICBM launched from North Korea would most likely fly over Alaska or Southern California, where we have considerable anti-missile forces stationed. Whether or not they would be able to stop such an attack is up for debate.

Our military’s latest anti-ballistic missiles boast some impressive records, at least in their ability to counter test attacks. However, those are just tests and no matter how well tests are created, they are still somewhat contrived. The only real test for those weapons is for someone to attack us. Fortunately, that hasn’t yet happened.

This means that we are trusting our safety to largely unproven systems. Worse than that, the older systems don’t have as impressive a record as the newer ones do. So, there’s always the possibility that some of those won’t work. If the attack comes in such a way as to necessitate a response by those defensive weapons, it’s hard to say how effective our defenses will actually be.

It’s Time to Prepare

Officials in South Korea, Japan, Guam and Hawaii are all telling their citizens to prepare for a possible nuclear attack. This may seem a bit strange to our younger generation, but I grew up under nuclear threat. I still remember the drills in elementary school, when we were taught to “duck and cover,” as well as taught where our fallout shelters were.

I actually got my start as a survivalist during the Cold War, due to the threat of thermonuclear war. This is no different. Right now, we are in another cold war; but this one is with North Korea, not the Soviet Union. While we are much bigger than North Korea, with a much larger military and many more nuclear weapons, the other side has the advantage. That’s simply because the madman dictator on the other side can launch a nuclear attack on his own, without worry about congressional oversight or the risk of impeachment.

You can be sure that Kim Jong-un has well prepared bunkers to retreat to, when he pushes the button, launching a nuclear war with the United States. His people might die, but then, he hasn’t shown much compassion towards them anyway. I seriously doubt that it would bother him much.

Communist governments tend to look at the people as little more than peasants to be used and discarded, as their “betters” in the government so choose. Why should we think that Kim will be any different? He is already starving his population, so that he can spend his nation’s wealth on building a nuclear arsenal, proving how little he cares for them.

North Korea has already threatened Guam. They’ve sent ballistic missiles over Japan’s airspace. They haven’t said a thing about Hawaii yet, but it’s another obvious target.

In fact, the Hawaiian state legislature just received a highly secretive briefing about preparing for a nuclear attack. Information about what was covered in the briefing hasn’t yet leaked out, but it was definitely about making preparations, should a nuclear attack come.

While this briefing was declared to not be associated with things going on in North Korea, I seriously doubt anyone believes that. The only real nuclear threat today is North Korea; Iran isn’t ready yet. So, even if it is coincidental, in the sense that it is something that is scheduled to happen every X years, I am sure that North Korea was the focus.

As it doesn’t look like tensions between the United States and North Korea are likely to subside anytime soon, you and I should be preparing as well.

We could very well find ourselves living in the aftermath of an EMP, without any warning that it is to come.

This articles has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Latest On North Korea: Is Nuclear Disaster On the Horizon?

Angry rhetoric has been flying back and forth across the Pacific Ocean, between Washington, DC and Pyongyang, North Korea. North Korea’s oft-spoken threats to destroy the United States has been repeated, ad nauseam, but are now being repeated back by President Trump.

Perhaps the North Korean leadership isn’t used to Americans who know how to talk tough, but it’s time that they learned.

Trump’s latest name for Kim Jong-un, “Rocket Man” is apparently gaining some steam within the diplomatic community, where it has been repeated by a number of ambassadors to the United Nations. While the US has borne the brunt of the hatred from the hermit kingdom, it appears that the nations of the world are united in recognizing the threat that he Kim regime is to all peace-loving people, everywhere.

This Conflict Isn’t New

The hatred out of Pyongyang is nothing new; it has been around since the creation of North Korea and the foundation of the Kim dynasty.

 

Here’s Why We Can Never Win Against North Korea

 

At the end of World War II, in 1948, the Korean peninsula was divided, just like Germany was, and the Iron Curtain descended over Korea. The Soviet Union placed Kim Il-sung, the current dictator’s grandfather, in power, mostly because he was a dedicated communist.

Immediately, the elderly Kim stated the goal of reuniting the Korean peninsula, brining the South Koreans under his rule. The North Korean hatred for the United States stems from there; for it was our protection of South Korea that has prevented the fulfillment of this dream.

Two short years later, then Secretary of State, Dean Acheson, gave a speech at the National Press Club. In this speech, Acheson made reference to several nations and islands as being critical to the “US defensive perimeter.” South Korea and Taiwan were clearly absent from that perimeter. This was misunderstood by the Russians, the Chinese and the North Koreans to mean that we would not go to war to protect North Korea, leading to the Korean War.

Two weeks after that ill-fated speech, Moscow gave the green light for the North Koreans to attack the South. On June 25th of that year, behind a massive artillery bombardment, the North Korean Army began to move, all but conquering South Korea. American and South Korean forces were forced back to the Pusan perimeter, from where their counterattack began.

US led UN forces advanced nearly to the Korea/China border, even reaching the Yalu River (the dividing line between North Korea and China) at one point. But this was too close for the Chinese government, who counterattacked, driving the combined UN forces back to somewhere near the 38th Parallel, the original (and once again agreed upon) dividing line between north and south.

If anything, this war inflamed the North Korean hatred for the USA, as the UN forces were predominantly American. In the eyes of the North Koreans, it was the US, not necessarily the UN, who defeated them and prevented the reunification of Korea under communist rule.

North Korean rhetoric against the United States began in this time period and has continued non-stop since then.

The only real difference between the angry rhetoric of a decade or four ago and the rhetoric of today, is that is seems like the North Korean government is finally reaching the point of being able to follow through on the threats they are making.

Video first seen on Trump Dayz.

Is There a Way Out?

Some people have accused the current tensions on President Trump, blaming him for escalating the current situation. Those people are predictably on the political left, where the idea of appeasement is much more palatable than standing on our own two feet.

This was Obama’s foreign policy and it has led to both North Korea and Iran being much closer to being able to attack us with nuclear arms.

Apparently those on the left are unaware of North Korea’s history and their attack on South Korea in 1950. For that matter, they probably have no idea of how poorly appeasement worked to stop Germany at the beginning of World War II.

If appeasement would work, North Korea should be the most peaceful nation on the face of the Earth.

Declarations of War

Beneath all of the rhetoric, the North Korean dictator, Kim Jong-un, clearly declared war on the United States in 2016. This is not surprising, nor does it really change things. The Korean peninsula has been at war since 1950. All that was signed in 1953 was an armistice, not a peace agreement. In fact, there has never been a peace agreement between the north and the south.

There have been sporadic incursions into South Korea by the north, as well as shots fired across the demilitarization zone and a number of skirmishes. So a declaration of war really isn’t necessary; it already exists. Any such declaration issued today would merely be political posturing, nothing more.

As I write this, a notice has come across my desk, saying that the North Korean Foreign Minister, Ri Yong-ho is publically stating that Donald Trump has declared war against his country. In doing this, he is taking one of Trump’s infamous tweets and turning it into a declaration of war.

If Foreign Minister Ri has anyone on his staff that has any knowledge of American law, he would know that the US President can’t make a declaration of war. That has to come out of Congress. But then, waiting for Congress to declare war wouldn’t fit the image they want to portray of Trump war-mongering and them being the innocent victim.

North Korea’s Advances

The North Koreans have been working on their nuclear program for at least 30 years, although the exact date is not known. Their first nuclear test was conducted on October 9, 2006, nearly 11 years ago. Their missile program is even older, starting in 1976, with the Soviet Scud-B missile as their base.

Just a couple of months ago, the North Koreans fired their first multi-stage missile, giving them the capability of reaching the US mainland, at least in theory.

Then, on September 3rd, they had a major underground nuclear weapons test, reputed to be their first hydrogen bomb. Whether it was a hydrogen bomb or not, based upon seismic data, it was a full order of magnitude larger than anything they had done before.

Then, a report came to light, which was actually created during Obama’s presidency.

 

America is Marching Blindly in the Greatest Trap Ever Set

 

This devastating report blew away the comments that had been made about the North Koreans needing to miniaturize their nuclear bombs. According to the report, their nuclear program had been working along that vein all along, so every North Korean nuclear weapon is already miniaturized and can be fitted to a missile.

So, where does this leave us? It appears that North Korea is on the verge of being able to field actual nuclear-tipped ICBMs, which are capable of reaching the US mainland. While I am sure there are still technical issues that need to be overcome, the issues that are left are child’s play, in comparison to what they have already accomplished.

Anyone who talks about how the North Koreans can’t yet field a nuclear missile that is capable of attacking the United States needs to take a reality pill and quit living in a world of denial.

The very facts that they have a nuclear weapon as powerful as they do and missiles which can reach our shores are grave enough that we should be concerned. Solving the problem of reentry heat is minimal and whether or not their aiming is accurate may not be an issue at all, especially if they decide to attack with an EMP.

Many have written about the possibility of an EMP, but now the North Korean state news agency is talking about it as well. While that may be nothing more than more propaganda to maintain the support of the people, I’m sure that some planner in the military is developing the plans for such an attack.

If They Should Attack

The big question facing the United States today, is what if they attack? With the rhetoric between Washington and Pyongyang heating up, there is a distinct possibility of then launching an attack. While I personally thing that would be a suicide move on their part, I can’t deny the possibility.

The most obvious option for our government to take is to eliminate their nuclear capability with a preemptive strike. But that’s easier said than done. All of North Korea’s missiles are apparently mounted on mobile launchers. So chances are, we don’t know where they all are.

Tracking mobile missiles is not easy, even with satellites, regardless of how easy Hollywood makes it seem. As the NRO discovered in the First Gulf War, it’s not hard to hide something the size of a mobile missile launcher in an area the size of a country.

Were we to attempt such an attack and fail, chances are high that Kim Jong-un would order the remaining missiles to attack the USA. Those that couldn’t reach the US would be targeted at our other vital interests, such as Hawaii, Guam, South Korea, Japan and out fleet off his shore.

Our other main option is to wait for them to attack first. If that should happen, we have enough nuclear capability to turn their country into a parking lot. But that’s not actually our biggest concern. While I’m sure that we would respond with some sort of counterattack, that wouldn’t affect your and my lives, nor those of our families.

What would affect our lives is our ability to stop that counterstrike before it reached us. That‘s the big question; whether or not we could effectively do that. Any ICBM launched from North Korea would most likely fly over Alaska or Southern California, where we have considerable anti-missile forces stationed. Whether or not they would be able to stop such an attack is up for debate.

Our military’s latest anti-ballistic missiles boast some impressive records, at least in their ability to counter test attacks. However, those are just tests and no matter how well tests are created, they are still somewhat contrived. The only real test for those weapons is for someone to attack us. Fortunately, that hasn’t yet happened.

This means that we are trusting our safety to largely unproven systems. Worse than that, the older systems don’t have as impressive a record as the newer ones do. So, there’s always the possibility that some of those won’t work. If the attack comes in such a way as to necessitate a response by those defensive weapons, it’s hard to say how effective our defenses will actually be.

It’s Time to Prepare

Officials in South Korea, Japan, Guam and Hawaii are all telling their citizens to prepare for a possible nuclear attack. This may seem a bit strange to our younger generation, but I grew up under nuclear threat. I still remember the drills in elementary school, when we were taught to “duck and cover,” as well as taught where our fallout shelters were.

I actually got my start as a survivalist during the Cold War, due to the threat of thermonuclear war. This is no different. Right now, we are in another cold war; but this one is with North Korea, not the Soviet Union. While we are much bigger than North Korea, with a much larger military and many more nuclear weapons, the other side has the advantage. That’s simply because the madman dictator on the other side can launch a nuclear attack on his own, without worry about congressional oversight or the risk of impeachment.

You can be sure that Kim Jong-un has well prepared bunkers to retreat to, when he pushes the button, launching a nuclear war with the United States. His people might die, but then, he hasn’t shown much compassion towards them anyway. I seriously doubt that it would bother him much.

Communist governments tend to look at the people as little more than peasants to be used and discarded, as their “betters” in the government so choose. Why should we think that Kim will be any different? He is already starving his population, so that he can spend his nation’s wealth on building a nuclear arsenal, proving how little he cares for them.

North Korea has already threatened Guam. They’ve sent ballistic missiles over Japan’s airspace. They haven’t said a thing about Hawaii yet, but it’s another obvious target.

In fact, the Hawaiian state legislature just received a highly secretive briefing about preparing for a nuclear attack. Information about what was covered in the briefing hasn’t yet leaked out, but it was definitely about making preparations, should a nuclear attack come.

While this briefing was declared to not be associated with things going on in North Korea, I seriously doubt anyone believes that. The only real nuclear threat today is North Korea; Iran isn’t ready yet. So, even if it is coincidental, in the sense that it is something that is scheduled to happen every X years, I am sure that North Korea was the focus.

As it doesn’t look like tensions between the United States and North Korea are likely to subside anytime soon, you and I should be preparing as well.

We could very well find ourselves living in the aftermath of an EMP, without any warning that it is to come.

This articles has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Latest On North Korea: Is Nuclear Disaster On the Horizon?

Click here to view the original post.

Angry rhetoric has been flying back and forth across the Pacific Ocean, between Washington, DC and Pyongyang, North Korea. North Korea’s oft-spoken threats to destroy the United States has been repeated, ad nauseam, but are now being repeated back by President Trump.

Perhaps the North Korean leadership isn’t used to Americans who know how to talk tough, but it’s time that they learned.

Trump’s latest name for Kim Jong-un, “Rocket Man” is apparently gaining some steam within the diplomatic community, where it has been repeated by a number of ambassadors to the United Nations. While the US has borne the brunt of the hatred from the hermit kingdom, it appears that the nations of the world are united in recognizing the threat that he Kim regime is to all peace-loving people, everywhere.

This Conflict Isn’t New

The hatred out of Pyongyang is nothing new; it has been around since the creation of North Korea and the foundation of the Kim dynasty.

 

Here’s Why We Can Never Win Against North Korea

 

At the end of World War II, in 1948, the Korean peninsula was divided, just like Germany was, and the Iron Curtain descended over Korea. The Soviet Union placed Kim Il-sung, the current dictator’s grandfather, in power, mostly because he was a dedicated communist.

Immediately, the elderly Kim stated the goal of reuniting the Korean peninsula, brining the South Koreans under his rule. The North Korean hatred for the United States stems from there; for it was our protection of South Korea that has prevented the fulfillment of this dream.

Two short years later, then Secretary of State, Dean Acheson, gave a speech at the National Press Club. In this speech, Acheson made reference to several nations and islands as being critical to the “US defensive perimeter.” South Korea and Taiwan were clearly absent from that perimeter. This was misunderstood by the Russians, the Chinese and the North Koreans to mean that we would not go to war to protect North Korea, leading to the Korean War.

Two weeks after that ill-fated speech, Moscow gave the green light for the North Koreans to attack the South. On June 25th of that year, behind a massive artillery bombardment, the North Korean Army began to move, all but conquering South Korea. American and South Korean forces were forced back to the Pusan perimeter, from where their counterattack began.

US led UN forces advanced nearly to the Korea/China border, even reaching the Yalu River (the dividing line between North Korea and China) at one point. But this was too close for the Chinese government, who counterattacked, driving the combined UN forces back to somewhere near the 38th Parallel, the original (and once again agreed upon) dividing line between north and south.

If anything, this war inflamed the North Korean hatred for the USA, as the UN forces were predominantly American. In the eyes of the North Koreans, it was the US, not necessarily the UN, who defeated them and prevented the reunification of Korea under communist rule.

North Korean rhetoric against the United States began in this time period and has continued non-stop since then.

The only real difference between the angry rhetoric of a decade or four ago and the rhetoric of today, is that is seems like the North Korean government is finally reaching the point of being able to follow through on the threats they are making.

Video first seen on Trump Dayz.

Is There a Way Out?

Some people have accused the current tensions on President Trump, blaming him for escalating the current situation. Those people are predictably on the political left, where the idea of appeasement is much more palatable than standing on our own two feet.

This was Obama’s foreign policy and it has led to both North Korea and Iran being much closer to being able to attack us with nuclear arms.

Apparently those on the left are unaware of North Korea’s history and their attack on South Korea in 1950. For that matter, they probably have no idea of how poorly appeasement worked to stop Germany at the beginning of World War II.

If appeasement would work, North Korea should be the most peaceful nation on the face of the Earth.

Declarations of War

Beneath all of the rhetoric, the North Korean dictator, Kim Jong-un, clearly declared war on the United States in 2016. This is not surprising, nor does it really change things. The Korean peninsula has been at war since 1950. All that was signed in 1953 was an armistice, not a peace agreement. In fact, there has never been a peace agreement between the north and the south.

There have been sporadic incursions into South Korea by the north, as well as shots fired across the demilitarization zone and a number of skirmishes. So a declaration of war really isn’t necessary; it already exists. Any such declaration issued today would merely be political posturing, nothing more.

As I write this, a notice has come across my desk, saying that the North Korean Foreign Minister, Ri Yong-ho is publically stating that Donald Trump has declared war against his country. In doing this, he is taking one of Trump’s infamous tweets and turning it into a declaration of war.

If Foreign Minister Ri has anyone on his staff that has any knowledge of American law, he would know that the US President can’t make a declaration of war. That has to come out of Congress. But then, waiting for Congress to declare war wouldn’t fit the image they want to portray of Trump war-mongering and them being the innocent victim.

North Korea’s Advances

The North Koreans have been working on their nuclear program for at least 30 years, although the exact date is not known. Their first nuclear test was conducted on October 9, 2006, nearly 11 years ago. Their missile program is even older, starting in 1976, with the Soviet Scud-B missile as their base.

Just a couple of months ago, the North Koreans fired their first multi-stage missile, giving them the capability of reaching the US mainland, at least in theory.

Then, on September 3rd, they had a major underground nuclear weapons test, reputed to be their first hydrogen bomb. Whether it was a hydrogen bomb or not, based upon seismic data, it was a full order of magnitude larger than anything they had done before.

Then, a report came to light, which was actually created during Obama’s presidency.

 

America is Marching Blindly in the Greatest Trap Ever Set

 

This devastating report blew away the comments that had been made about the North Koreans needing to miniaturize their nuclear bombs. According to the report, their nuclear program had been working along that vein all along, so every North Korean nuclear weapon is already miniaturized and can be fitted to a missile.

So, where does this leave us? It appears that North Korea is on the verge of being able to field actual nuclear-tipped ICBMs, which are capable of reaching the US mainland. While I am sure there are still technical issues that need to be overcome, the issues that are left are child’s play, in comparison to what they have already accomplished.

Anyone who talks about how the North Koreans can’t yet field a nuclear missile that is capable of attacking the United States needs to take a reality pill and quit living in a world of denial.

The very facts that they have a nuclear weapon as powerful as they do and missiles which can reach our shores are grave enough that we should be concerned. Solving the problem of reentry heat is minimal and whether or not their aiming is accurate may not be an issue at all, especially if they decide to attack with an EMP.

Many have written about the possibility of an EMP, but now the North Korean state news agency is talking about it as well. While that may be nothing more than more propaganda to maintain the support of the people, I’m sure that some planner in the military is developing the plans for such an attack.

If They Should Attack

The big question facing the United States today, is what if they attack? With the rhetoric between Washington and Pyongyang heating up, there is a distinct possibility of then launching an attack. While I personally thing that would be a suicide move on their part, I can’t deny the possibility.

The most obvious option for our government to take is to eliminate their nuclear capability with a preemptive strike. But that’s easier said than done. All of North Korea’s missiles are apparently mounted on mobile launchers. So chances are, we don’t know where they all are.

Tracking mobile missiles is not easy, even with satellites, regardless of how easy Hollywood makes it seem. As the NRO discovered in the First Gulf War, it’s not hard to hide something the size of a mobile missile launcher in an area the size of a country.

Were we to attempt such an attack and fail, chances are high that Kim Jong-un would order the remaining missiles to attack the USA. Those that couldn’t reach the US would be targeted at our other vital interests, such as Hawaii, Guam, South Korea, Japan and out fleet off his shore.

Our other main option is to wait for them to attack first. If that should happen, we have enough nuclear capability to turn their country into a parking lot. But that’s not actually our biggest concern. While I’m sure that we would respond with some sort of counterattack, that wouldn’t affect your and my lives, nor those of our families.

What would affect our lives is our ability to stop that counterstrike before it reached us. That‘s the big question; whether or not we could effectively do that. Any ICBM launched from North Korea would most likely fly over Alaska or Southern California, where we have considerable anti-missile forces stationed. Whether or not they would be able to stop such an attack is up for debate.

Our military’s latest anti-ballistic missiles boast some impressive records, at least in their ability to counter test attacks. However, those are just tests and no matter how well tests are created, they are still somewhat contrived. The only real test for those weapons is for someone to attack us. Fortunately, that hasn’t yet happened.

This means that we are trusting our safety to largely unproven systems. Worse than that, the older systems don’t have as impressive a record as the newer ones do. So, there’s always the possibility that some of those won’t work. If the attack comes in such a way as to necessitate a response by those defensive weapons, it’s hard to say how effective our defenses will actually be.

It’s Time to Prepare

Officials in South Korea, Japan, Guam and Hawaii are all telling their citizens to prepare for a possible nuclear attack. This may seem a bit strange to our younger generation, but I grew up under nuclear threat. I still remember the drills in elementary school, when we were taught to “duck and cover,” as well as taught where our fallout shelters were.

I actually got my start as a survivalist during the Cold War, due to the threat of thermonuclear war. This is no different. Right now, we are in another cold war; but this one is with North Korea, not the Soviet Union. While we are much bigger than North Korea, with a much larger military and many more nuclear weapons, the other side has the advantage. That’s simply because the madman dictator on the other side can launch a nuclear attack on his own, without worry about congressional oversight or the risk of impeachment.

You can be sure that Kim Jong-un has well prepared bunkers to retreat to, when he pushes the button, launching a nuclear war with the United States. His people might die, but then, he hasn’t shown much compassion towards them anyway. I seriously doubt that it would bother him much.

Communist governments tend to look at the people as little more than peasants to be used and discarded, as their “betters” in the government so choose. Why should we think that Kim will be any different? He is already starving his population, so that he can spend his nation’s wealth on building a nuclear arsenal, proving how little he cares for them.

North Korea has already threatened Guam. They’ve sent ballistic missiles over Japan’s airspace. They haven’t said a thing about Hawaii yet, but it’s another obvious target.

In fact, the Hawaiian state legislature just received a highly secretive briefing about preparing for a nuclear attack. Information about what was covered in the briefing hasn’t yet leaked out, but it was definitely about making preparations, should a nuclear attack come.

While this briefing was declared to not be associated with things going on in North Korea, I seriously doubt anyone believes that. The only real nuclear threat today is North Korea; Iran isn’t ready yet. So, even if it is coincidental, in the sense that it is something that is scheduled to happen every X years, I am sure that North Korea was the focus.

As it doesn’t look like tensions between the United States and North Korea are likely to subside anytime soon, you and I should be preparing as well.

We could very well find ourselves living in the aftermath of an EMP, without any warning that it is to come.

This articles has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

How Hurricane Crisis Could Make Trump Look Bad

Click here to view the original post.

The recent one-two punch of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma have left the country reeling, as any such event does.

But this time, it wasn’t just one such event that struck the country, but two, with a mere eight days between the end of one and landfall of the next. Never before in our nation’s history, has there been so much destruction wrought in such a short amount of time.

In the past, natural disasters of this magnitude have become watershed moments for various presidents.

When Hurricane Katrina nailed New Orleans and the Gulf Coast in 2005, President Bush was lambasted thoroughly in the press for the poor response. Granted, not all of that poor response was his fault or even his administrations. But it happened on his watch, so he got the blame.

Specifically, Bush was blamed because it took three days for any government response to arrive in New Orleans. That’s enough time for people to start dying from the lack of adequate shelter and clean drinking water. Part of that delay was caused by the difficulty of getting through the deadfall trees on the highways, but the biggest part was that FEMA couldn’t move, until the state Governor declared a state of emergency.

 

This smart device will help you slash an excess of 70% off your power bill overnight…

 

The poor press generated by Hurricane Katrina stuck with President Bush until the end of his presidency. It’s even been said that the bad press that Bush received from Hurricane Katrina had a part in President Obama winning the election in November of 2008, as McCain was tainted by simply being in the same political party as Bush.

Seven years after Katrina, Superstorm Sandy, the conflux of two hurricanes, struck the New Jersey seashore, once again destroying homes and leaving people without the basic necessities of life. As with Katriana, FEMA was slow getting their act together; but this time, it couldn’t be blamed on the state’s governor. Rather, it simply demonstrated how inefficient FMEA is.

There are many examples of this, most notably the fact that they didn’t put out requests for bids until two days after the hurricane hit the coast. Considering that the National Hurricane Center had been tracking the storm since it formed off the West-African coast, that was inexcusable.

But the media hushed that up. In fact, President Obama didn’t receive any bad press in the national media.

However, that’s not to say that Hurricane Sandy had no affect on Obama’s presidency; it did. In fact, it had a huge affect. Days before the hurricane hit, Obama was running severely behind in the polls.

But Hurricane Sandy changed all that. Hitting just over a week before the elections, it allowed Obama to look good, as he authorized relief efforts and financial aid to the victims, as well as visiting the area to show his support and concern.

In both cases:

  • The sitting presidents sent aid, petitioned Congress for disaster relief funds, gave speeches and visited the afflicted areas, although Bush delayed his visit to avoid getting in way of relief efforts.
  • People were displaced from their homes, lost property and in some cases lost their lives.
  • Thousands of homes were without electric power, in some cases for as long as seven weeks.
  • FEMA’s efforts at bringing disaster relief were slow and poorly managed. They apparently hadn’t learned much in the intervening seven years.
  • People were digging in dumpsters, trying to find something to eat.

But in one case, the sitting president came out smelling like a rose and in the other, like he had fallen in a septic tank.

What Was the Difference?

The difference was how the media handled the event.

Hurricanes are a big visual event for the media, with lots of good footage and pictures of flooding, general destruction, families in refugee centers and relief workers. People all over the nation are concerned and interested, so they can count on lots of viewers tuning in to see their “exclusive coverage.”

As such, it’s a major opportunity for politicians to make political hay. They get to stand in front of the cameras, talking about how bad it is, how much they support the victims and how much they are personally doing to get those people help.

Spending authorization bills get lots of “pork” projects attached to them, because nobody would dare vote against relief for the victims. For politicians with the right media connections, disasters are a great opportunity all around, too bad about those people who got hurt and lost their homes.

Since the media hated Bush, both for being a Republican and personally, they did everything they could to make him look bad in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. But Obama was their fair-haired boy and he could do no wrong in their eyes.

So, as they did throughout his presidency and even during the campaign, they simply ignored anything that might make him look bad, refusing to report it. That left them with lots of good shots of President Obama looking concerned.

Since reality in the 21st Century is defined by televisions, computer monitors and handheld devices, all that most people know, is what the media tells them. This gives the media a huge amount of influence over society, influence that they use for the political benefit of their masters.

With the mainstream media totally sold out to the progressive-liberal left, what the low-information voters are receiving is political propaganda, not anything that even resembles the truth. Fake news has taken over, and the purveyors of that fake news have an agenda that they are trying to fulfill. It doesn’t matter how much they loudly and publically proclaim their innocence and lack of bias, it’s all a lie.

So, How Does this Affect Trump?

Enter President Donald Trump, a true enemy of the media. Trump’s war with the mainstream media has become famous, with neither side backing down. The mainstream media had thrown all their weight behind Hillary Clinton in the presidential race and they lost. Like the rest of those on the left, they don’t know how to handle that, so they’ve doubled down, attacking Trump at every turn.

When Donald Trump and his wife went to Houston, to see the damage and relief efforts for themselves, the media freaked out about the First Lady’s high heel shoes, accusing her of being “out of touch” with the victims, by wearing high heels to go to a flooded region of the country. Of course, they didn’t say anything when she got off of Air Force One, wearing a sensible pair of sneakers. Oops.

You would think that even the media would learn from a mistake like that, but they didn’t.

A few days later, when the Trumps went back to Houston again, we were treated to an instant replay, as the mainstream media once again started a Twitter firestorm about Melania getting on board Air Force One in heels. As with the first time, there was nothing that even vaguely resembled a retraction or apology when she once again got off the airplane in tennies.

That’s it. That’s the coverage that the media gave Donald Trump from Hurricane Harvey. There was nothing about FEMA and their relief efforts. Nothing about Trump’s request for billions in relief funds. There wasn’t even any photos about Trump and his wife helping out at a relief center.

Not even a word about Trump giving one million dollars of his own money to help Hurricane Harvey victims. Rather, they pushed a photo showing Obama feeding the hungry in a shelter, claiming that it was hurricane relief, when it wasn’t.

Such is the objectivity of the media today. Their whole purpose is to make Democrats look good and Republicans look bad. To do so, they hide any good news about Republicans and hide any bad news about Democrats.

Of course, they’re talking into an echo chamber, repeating the same things over and over again; telling their audience how bad Republicans are. But who is that audience? The low-information voters who don’t bother researching anything for themselves and merely repeat whatever Democrat talking points the media tells them to believe.

They apparently haven’t learned yet. Bashing Republicans isn’t going to win them any elections. The Democrat Party doesn’t even have a message anymore. Their supposed “message” is to talk about how bad they think Trump is, based purely on the name calling they’ve been doing. As if name calling is any sort of evidence. Yet apparently they think it is.

But it Doesn’t Stop There!

It’s bad enough to have the mainstream media giving a false narrative and convincing the low-information voters that Trump and the Republican party are bad. But that’s just the foundation level of what they’re doing.

From there it gets even more interesting. Conspiracy theories don’t just exist in the far right of the political spectrum, the far left has their own collection of conspiracy theorists at work.

According to this group of pseudo-scientists and pseudo-political theorists, Hurricanes Harvey and Irma are Donald Trump’s fault. Yes folks, our president apparently hates the American people so much, that he’s intentionally trying to ruin their lives and even kill them. He is doing this by hand-crafting hurricanes out of thin air.

One theory holds that Donald Trump ordered cloud seeding to create the hurricanes, using some ultra-secret magic dust, that they can sprinkle in clouds, causing any sort of natural disaster they want.

Cloud seeding does apparently exist, and it’s been done to cause rain during a drought. But there’s a huge difference between causing a little rain to fall on some farmlands, and creating a storm that’s 400 miles across and has winds in excess of 150 miles per hour.

Then there’s the theory of hurricanes being caused by global warming, or “climate change” as it’s called now. The global warming narrative has been debunked so many times now, that it’s not even funny. Yet there are still lots of people who stick to that story, saying that the rest of us are criminal for not accepting “settled science.” Settled? It’s only settled in their warped minds.

Once again, we can go back to the Mayans to disprove that pseudo-science. If global warming caused hurricanes, how could there have been hurricanes in Mesoamerica over 1,000 years ago? How could those hurricanes have continued to exist through the mini ice-age?

Yet the global warming crowd is trying to blame Trump for these hurricanes; not for anything he’s done, which created more warming; but rather for pulling the US out of the Paris accord. Apparently, pulling out of an agreement that wasn’t going to make any discernible difference anyway is enough to cause hurricanes to start attacking our country. I never knew nature could read.

The cause of hurricanes is known. While we are powerless to do anything to stop it, we can see from the recent hurricane activity that the National Hurricane Center is good at predicting the actions of these hurricanes and warning people of what is to come.

No matter how much pseudo-science they invent to try and pin them on Donald Trump, it’s not going to work. The only people who will believe them are those that already hate Trump and are looking for whatever excuse they can find to talk about how bad he is.

Whatever they do and say on politics, you need to be prepared and expect the worse!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

How Much Of A Beating Can We Take?

Click here to view the original post.

In the last three weeks, we’ve seen two of the worst hurricanes in history strike our shores, with Hurricane Harvey hitting Houston and the surrounding area, and Hurricane Irma hitting all of Florida.

While the 6.5 million inhabitants of the Houston metro weren’t told to evacuate, Florida Governor Rick Scott issued a statewide evacuation order, telling 5.6 million people to move out of the state for the duration.

Considering that only 1.2 million people live in the New Orleans area, either of these hurricanes dwarf the number of people who were affected by Hurricane Katrina, the costliest hurricane in US history.

The total dollars of damage from these two hurricanes is far from being discovered, but it will clearly put a major dent in our national economy.

At the same time all of this is happening, much of the western United States is ablaze with forest fires. Every state west of the Continental Divide has numerous fires, with California, Oregon, Washington and Idaho being hit the hardest. While much of this is wilderness area, the cost in lost timber will be astronomical. It will regrow, but that will take time.

On top of all this, the seismic activity in the area of Yellowstone National Park is spiking, with a “swarm” of over 1,500 earthquakes. Scientists state that there is no reason to suspect an eruption of the supervolcano yet, but they also tell us that Yellowstone is overdue for an eruption. What is keeping them from predicting one anytime soon is that there are too many other signs of a pending earthquake that aren’t visible yet. While that could change at any time, we should, at least, have some warning.

Of course, those who believe religiously in Climate Change are trying to make political hay from these disasters, claiming that they are caused by climate change. But then, we’ve heard them blame climate change for Brexit, the Flint water crisis (which was caused by bad management), a surge in fatal shark attacks, severe acne and even the election of Donald Trump as president.

This smart device will help you slash an excess of 70% off your power bill overnight…

Anyone who understand the science of hurricanes and forest fires knows that even if global warming were true, it would not cause these events. But then, those who push that narrative are selling it to a group of low-information voters, who don’t really understand, but merely accept what they’re told.

President Trump has already asked Congress for a 7.9 billion dollar relief fund for Hurricane Harvey and will probably end up doing something similar for the victims of Hurricane Irma.

If Congress follows their normal routine, other billions in pork spending will be added to these two bills, money spent on projects that couldn’t normally make it through the Congressional review process, but may very well be funded on the backs of the important legislation providing relief for those affected by the hurricanes.

But one has to wonder how many of these disasters the country can absorb, before they start causing a serious impact on our economy.

Granted, the United States is the richest country in the world, but even our well of resources isn’t bottomless. Eventually, we’ll hit a point where our government can’t keep borrowing money, then what will happen?

We in the prepping community look at a wide variety of potential disasters, wondering if one or another will end up being the downfall of our nation, creating that TEOTWAWKI world that we all prepare for. Yet, while we always look to a single event being the cause of such change, there’s nothing to say that there can’t be a series of events that cumulatively bring the nation down.

Right now, we have three of the country’s largest 20 metropolitan areas lying in ruins, not counting the damage to smaller communities. Over a million people had to abandon their homes, due to flooding, in Houston alone.

How much those cities are in ruins is still being evaluated; but it’s clear that it’s going to cost hundreds of billions of dollars over the next three years to rebuild them; estimates are running as high as $290 billion dollars.

In Florida, the local power company is predicting that it could take weeks to restore power to everyone, just as it did after Hurricane Katrina and Superstorm Sandy. The damage is so severe, that they are looking at the possibility of a wholesale rebuild of the electrical grid.

 

Video first seen on TODAY.

But this is nothing compared to Puerto Rico, where they are saying restoring the grid will probably take more than six months.

All this is from just the first two hurricanes of the season. We still have a month and a half of peak hurricane season to go. Who knows what else might happen in that time?

So, Where Does this Leave Us?

Sadly, few of the people hit by either of these hurricanes or the hurricanes to come are prepared for this sort of event to happen in their lives. Flood insurance and hurricane insurance are expensive; so few people buy them, unless they are required to as a stipulation in their mortgage contract.

What that means is that those whose homes are damaged will still have to pay their mortgage, as well as pay for expensive repairs to their homes, somehow. It will take some of these people years to effect those repairs, simply because they don’t have the money to do so and whatever aid they receive from the government won’t be enough to finish the work.

But what if those people didn’t pay their mortgages, but instead abandoned their wrecked homes and ruined lives? What would happen then?

In that case, the banks and mortgage companies would begin the process of foreclosing on their homes, taking that property, which was the collateral for those loans. The banks would then sell off the property, writing off the loss.

If each bank were to just absorb a few such losses, it wouldn’t make much difference. But if we end up seeing a continuation of destruction, there is a possibility of enough of these losses causing banks, especially smaller banks, to fail. While the government has typically bailed out the banks that were “too big to fail,” they don’t offer that same protection to smaller ones.

Each failed bank, like each disaster, becomes a burden on the economy, dragging us closer to the edge of the cliff of financial collapse. There’s really no way of knowing exactly how close that cliff is or which event might trigger a fall. A lot of that depends on psychology, never a very exact science. But one that is even less exact when you combine the psychology of many different people together.

All the More Reason to Prep

If anything, these events merely show all the more reason why you and I need to prepare. None of us know what is coming our way next week, let alone next year.

The things I’ve mentioned so far in this article are just disasters that nature has provided, without even looking at man-made problems that we could face. The world we live in is clearly a dangerous place, and it’s not going to get safer anytime soon.

But our prepping needs to go far beyond building a stockpile. I don’t care if you have ten years worth of food stashed away, it’s not going to do you much good, if it’s under ten feet of water. Nor, for that matter, is most of it going to be available for you to use if your home gets destroyed.

One way of mitigating this risk is by having at least some of your stockpile off-site, preferably in a secure location that you can bug out to, should you be forced to abandon your home. That way, you have something to use while you are away, and maybe even while you are trying to dig your home out of the rubble and see what you can salvage.

But there’s something even more important than your stockpile; that’s the knowledge you learn as part of preparing to face a disaster. Even in the worst of cases, where everything you own is taken from you, your knowledge will remain.

That’s what you’ll have to depend on to survive.

With enough knowledge, you can use just about anything you can find to survive. Maybe you won’t be living in the lap of luxury, but you’ll be warm, fed and have clean water to drink. That’s a whole lot more than millions of displaced victims of these two hurricanes can say today.

While they might be comfortably hiding away in a hotel room today, they’ll be in trouble when their funds run out. You, on the other hand, won’t run out of funds, because you’ll turn your evacuation into a camping trip.

Throughout history, it has been the more resourceful of us who have been the most successful. Whether that resourcefulness led them to invent new things, find new ways of doing things, or just do the necessary tasks of life.

In the wake of any disaster, it will be those who are the most resourceful who are the most successful as well. That survival knowledge you are learning is what is going to put you in this small, elite group of people.

Build your knowledge and prepare yourself! Your family’s survival will depend on that!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

How Much Of A Beating Can We Take?

In the last three weeks, we’ve seen two of the worst hurricanes in history strike our shores, with Hurricane Harvey hitting Houston and the surrounding area, and Hurricane Irma hitting all of Florida.

While the 6.5 million inhabitants of the Houston metro weren’t told to evacuate, Florida Governor Rick Scott issued a statewide evacuation order, telling 5.6 million people to move out of the state for the duration.

Considering that only 1.2 million people live in the New Orleans area, either of these hurricanes dwarf the number of people who were affected by Hurricane Katrina, the costliest hurricane in US history.

The total dollars of damage from these two hurricanes is far from being discovered, but it will clearly put a major dent in our national economy.

At the same time all of this is happening, much of the western United States is ablaze with forest fires. Every state west of the Continental Divide has numerous fires, with California, Oregon, Washington and Idaho being hit the hardest. While much of this is wilderness area, the cost in lost timber will be astronomical. It will regrow, but that will take time.

On top of all this, the seismic activity in the area of Yellowstone National Park is spiking, with a “swarm” of over 1,500 earthquakes. Scientists state that there is no reason to suspect an eruption of the supervolcano yet, but they also tell us that Yellowstone is overdue for an eruption. What is keeping them from predicting one anytime soon is that there are too many other signs of a pending earthquake that aren’t visible yet. While that could change at any time, we should, at least, have some warning.

Of course, those who believe religiously in Climate Change are trying to make political hay from these disasters, claiming that they are caused by climate change. But then, we’ve heard them blame climate change for Brexit, the Flint water crisis (which was caused by bad management), a surge in fatal shark attacks, severe acne and even the election of Donald Trump as president.

This smart device will help you slash an excess of 70% off your power bill overnight…

Anyone who understand the science of hurricanes and forest fires knows that even if global warming were true, it would not cause these events. But then, those who push that narrative are selling it to a group of low-information voters, who don’t really understand, but merely accept what they’re told.

President Trump has already asked Congress for a 7.9 billion dollar relief fund for Hurricane Harvey and will probably end up doing something similar for the victims of Hurricane Irma.

If Congress follows their normal routine, other billions in pork spending will be added to these two bills, money spent on projects that couldn’t normally make it through the Congressional review process, but may very well be funded on the backs of the important legislation providing relief for those affected by the hurricanes.

But one has to wonder how many of these disasters the country can absorb, before they start causing a serious impact on our economy.

Granted, the United States is the richest country in the world, but even our well of resources isn’t bottomless. Eventually, we’ll hit a point where our government can’t keep borrowing money, then what will happen?

We in the prepping community look at a wide variety of potential disasters, wondering if one or another will end up being the downfall of our nation, creating that TEOTWAWKI world that we all prepare for. Yet, while we always look to a single event being the cause of such change, there’s nothing to say that there can’t be a series of events that cumulatively bring the nation down.

Right now, we have three of the country’s largest 20 metropolitan areas lying in ruins, not counting the damage to smaller communities. Over a million people had to abandon their homes, due to flooding, in Houston alone.

How much those cities are in ruins is still being evaluated; but it’s clear that it’s going to cost hundreds of billions of dollars over the next three years to rebuild them; estimates are running as high as $290 billion dollars.

In Florida, the local power company is predicting that it could take weeks to restore power to everyone, just as it did after Hurricane Katrina and Superstorm Sandy. The damage is so severe, that they are looking at the possibility of a wholesale rebuild of the electrical grid.

 

Video first seen on TODAY.

But this is nothing compared to Puerto Rico, where they are saying restoring the grid will probably take more than six months.

All this is from just the first two hurricanes of the season. We still have a month and a half of peak hurricane season to go. Who knows what else might happen in that time?

So, Where Does this Leave Us?

Sadly, few of the people hit by either of these hurricanes or the hurricanes to come are prepared for this sort of event to happen in their lives. Flood insurance and hurricane insurance are expensive; so few people buy them, unless they are required to as a stipulation in their mortgage contract.

What that means is that those whose homes are damaged will still have to pay their mortgage, as well as pay for expensive repairs to their homes, somehow. It will take some of these people years to effect those repairs, simply because they don’t have the money to do so and whatever aid they receive from the government won’t be enough to finish the work.

But what if those people didn’t pay their mortgages, but instead abandoned their wrecked homes and ruined lives? What would happen then?

In that case, the banks and mortgage companies would begin the process of foreclosing on their homes, taking that property, which was the collateral for those loans. The banks would then sell off the property, writing off the loss.

If each bank were to just absorb a few such losses, it wouldn’t make much difference. But if we end up seeing a continuation of destruction, there is a possibility of enough of these losses causing banks, especially smaller banks, to fail. While the government has typically bailed out the banks that were “too big to fail,” they don’t offer that same protection to smaller ones.

Each failed bank, like each disaster, becomes a burden on the economy, dragging us closer to the edge of the cliff of financial collapse. There’s really no way of knowing exactly how close that cliff is or which event might trigger a fall. A lot of that depends on psychology, never a very exact science. But one that is even less exact when you combine the psychology of many different people together.

All the More Reason to Prep

If anything, these events merely show all the more reason why you and I need to prepare. None of us know what is coming our way next week, let alone next year.

The things I’ve mentioned so far in this article are just disasters that nature has provided, without even looking at man-made problems that we could face. The world we live in is clearly a dangerous place, and it’s not going to get safer anytime soon.

But our prepping needs to go far beyond building a stockpile. I don’t care if you have ten years worth of food stashed away, it’s not going to do you much good, if it’s under ten feet of water. Nor, for that matter, is most of it going to be available for you to use if your home gets destroyed.

One way of mitigating this risk is by having at least some of your stockpile off-site, preferably in a secure location that you can bug out to, should you be forced to abandon your home. That way, you have something to use while you are away, and maybe even while you are trying to dig your home out of the rubble and see what you can salvage.

But there’s something even more important than your stockpile; that’s the knowledge you learn as part of preparing to face a disaster. Even in the worst of cases, where everything you own is taken from you, your knowledge will remain.

That’s what you’ll have to depend on to survive.

With enough knowledge, you can use just about anything you can find to survive. Maybe you won’t be living in the lap of luxury, but you’ll be warm, fed and have clean water to drink. That’s a whole lot more than millions of displaced victims of these two hurricanes can say today.

While they might be comfortably hiding away in a hotel room today, they’ll be in trouble when their funds run out. You, on the other hand, won’t run out of funds, because you’ll turn your evacuation into a camping trip.

Throughout history, it has been the more resourceful of us who have been the most successful. Whether that resourcefulness led them to invent new things, find new ways of doing things, or just do the necessary tasks of life.

In the wake of any disaster, it will be those who are the most resourceful who are the most successful as well. That survival knowledge you are learning is what is going to put you in this small, elite group of people.

Build your knowledge and prepare yourself! Your family’s survival will depend on that!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

What We’ve Learned From 9-11, In Sixteen Years

Click here to view the original post.

Sixteen years ago, a group of radicalized Islamic terrorists hijacked four airliners and committed the most horrific act of terrorism in American history.

Two of those planes were flown into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City and the third was flown into the Pentagon. The passengers of the fourth courageously wrested control of their airplane from the terrorists, preventing it from reaching its target. But they paid for their heroism with their life, as the jet crashed in the Pennsylvania countryside.

A total of 2,996 people died in the attacks on 9-11, with another 6,000 wounded. Both of the towers of the World Trade Center, which were 110 stories tall, crashed to the ground, as the heat from the burning jet fuel weakened the structural beams in the towers’ cores.

The only saving grace was that the attack occurred early enough in the morning, that only a couple of thousand of the 50,000 workers and 200,000 daily visitors were in the towers at the time of the attack. Had the event happened midday, when the towers were filled, the travesty would have been much worse.

This event was a game changer for then-President Bush and for the nation as a whole. The War on Terror sprung from the ruins of those towers, as the government sought those responsible, especially Osama bin Laden, the leader of the terrorist organization al-Queda.

 

The SEAL Survival Guide to Staying Alive in the War Zone Called “New America”

 

Enough time has passed, that many have forgotten the lessons of that dreadful day, especially those on the left.

But while the liberal left is ready to forgive and forget, all but giving our country to the dangerous people that hurt our nation, there were many lessons to be learned that day; lessons that can be all too easily forgotten.

1. Terrorism is Alive and Well in the World Today

Before 9-11, terrorism wasn’t an American problem. Rather, it was something that happened in other countries around the world. But we were untouched by it. Oh, we heard the occasional story about some horrific attack overseas, but we weren’t all that concerned. After all, they weren’t bothering us.

9-11 woke up our collective consciousness to the reality of international terrorism, especially terrorism fueled by radical Islam. No longer was it something that only happened to other people, it was something that happened here at home.

We had the proof. The twin towers were down, there were almost 3,000 people dead.

2. Radicalized Islam is the Most Dangerous Human Force there is

More than a realization of terrorism, we gained a realization of just how dangerous a religion Islam actually is. Up to that point, it was merely a quaint religion that was practiced by the Arab countries.

But 9-11 thrust Islam before our eyes, not as a world religion, but as a force for destruction. We had seen the evidence; Muslims killed.

If anything, radicalized Islam is more dangerous today, 16 years later. Islamic terrorist groups abound, growing every day. There is even what is claimed to be a Muslim caliphate, created by a terrorist organization, ISIS. Muslims are on the march and their clearly stated goal is to take over the world.

3. We Are Not Safe

Much of our collective complacency came from our belief that we were too big to fall, or rather, we’re too big and too powerful for anyone to attack. But that proved to e a false hope, as al-Queda used our own arrogance against us.

The conventional wisdom of military planning doesn’t apply to terrorism. They don’t fight stand-up battles, army against army. Rather, they sneak around in the shadows, attacking civilians when they are unprepared to be attacked and avoiding a confrontation with police, military and any other armed force.

This means that none of us are safe, no matter where we are. It was proven on 9-11 and it’s been proven over and over since then; the government can’t protect us.

We have to be ready to protect ourselves, or there won’t be any protection to be found. Even then, protecting ourselves from something like 9-11 is beyond what anyone can do.

4. We Can Still Come Together and Support One Another

A few weeks before 9-11 I was watching a World War II documentary. Amongst the many thoughts that paraded through my mind was the question of whether the nation could ever pull together again, like we did during that war, with people reaching across political lines to support each other and the country. I concluded that we couldn’t do it again.

But I was glad to see that I was wrong. 9-11 pulled the nation together, in support of the victims, their families and the need to start the War on Terror. Never before had I seen Americans come together in such a way, standing for a common cause.

That question has reared its ugly head once again. Our political divide is greater than ever. Yet I have to believe that if our country were ever attacked in such an outrageous manner again, we would all come together, putting aside our differences in the common cause of healing our nation’s wounds.

5. There Are Still Plenty of Heroes Around

If there was one thing that stood out on 9-11, it was the heroes that rushed to the tower, trying to save people’s lives.

These public servants, in the police and fire departments, gave sacrificially of their time, their effort and in some cases, even of their lives, in order to save others. Firemen and other rescue workers from around the nation congregated on the Twin Towers, helping local emergency crews to dig through the rubble and save as many lives as possible.

While the thought of heroes has become obsolete in some people’s minds, the need for heroes has not. The world we are living in isn’t getting any safer, and as long as it is unsafe, there will be a need for heroes who are willing to put their lives on the line, in order to protect others.

Some of those heroes wear Army green, others wear police blue and still others drive around in big red trucks. But they are all heroes equally; people who put the lives of others before their own.

6. Anything Can Become a Weapon

In the hands of a killer, anything can become a weapon. In this case, jet aircraft became weapons. Not military aircraft, armed to the teeth, but everyday airliners, used to haul people from point A to point B. But when those aircraft were in the hands of terrorists, they became weapons of mass destruction.

While terrorists and other killers are willing to use just about anything to wreck mayhem and death, the rest of us tend to play by the rules. This gives them a distinct advantage. A willingness to break the rules allows one to take ordinary objects and use them to kill and destroy.

Part of that is because they aren’t concerned about getting innocent people killed; so they use innocents as human shields, hiding behind women and children to kill. When we try to retaliate, it’s almost impossible to kill them, without killing those innocent victims.

In doing this, terrorists attempt to steal the moral high ground from those they are attacking. In many cases, it works, especially considering that the majority of the mainstream media supports the terrorists. So, they report the human shield being killed, while willfully ignoring the civilian casualties that caused us to retaliate in the first place.

7. Air Travel is Essential to Modern Society and Must be Protected

For about a week after the attack, all aircraft, except military aircraft, were grounded, putting a complete stop to air travel and air shipments. This left people stranded all over the country, as well as putting a large dent in companies being able to conduct normal business operations.

Yet that really wasn’t an unreasonable reaction to the attack. Before the government could allow airlines to resume their normal schedule, they needed to ensure that there weren’t more terrorists trained and waiting to conduct a follow-on attack. Had they not put a stop to air travel, it would have been irresponsible and put the lives of countless more people at risk.

One of the results of this attack was in increase in airport security, especially in preventing people from entering concourses, unless they had a valid boarding pass and identification. While this has been an inconvenience, it has reduced the likelihood of a repeat attack.

But there’s another part of this that is important, and that is the protection of the aircraft’s cockpit. The passengers of United Airlines flight 93 showed us the way. That is, the passengers and crew took it upon themselves to fight the terrorists, literally sacrificing their own lives to protect others.

Granted, they would have died either way, but in this way, they made their deaths worthwhile, rather than merely being more victims.

Video first seen on Real Stories.

8. We Must Give Our Military and Police Whatever Support they Need to Stamp Out Terrorism

Terrorism is very much a part of the global landscape today. To protect ourselves, we must give our government and especially our military, the tools and support it needs to stamp out this global blight. The only other option is to allow the terrorists to win, and that clearly isn’t an option worth considering.

The men and women of our military forces put their lives on the line for us, in order to protect our lives, our homes and our country. Each and every one of them has written a check to the government for their own lives, declaring that they are willing to lay down their own lives, if necessary, to ensure that others might live. How can we not support them?

Some have said that violence never solved anything; but they are wrong. Violence has solved many things throughout history. But sadly, many of those were solved in the negative, with evil people using violence to their own ends.

This is exactly what terrorists are trying to do. They won’t stop because we speak nicely to them. They won’t stop if we give them money. They will only stop when our military forces hunt them down and destroy them. Evil such as this must be stamped out, not tolerated.

9. Additional Police Forces, Homeland Security and Stealing Our Privacy isn’t the Solution

It is impossible to create a perfectly foolproof security network, no matter how hard we try. There will always be holes that terrorists and other criminals can capitalize on. Even in the old Soviet Union, which was oppressive of their own citizens, a very active criminal element existed. Smugglers were common, often buying off the border guards who were supposed to stop them.

Criminals will always find a way through security. So giving up our freedom in order to buy security is nothing more than a placebo. It might make some people feel more secure, but they aren’t. Terrorists can still get through.

The only true security we can have is an armed population, trained and prepared to counter any terrorist activity on our soil. The sheriff’s department where I live puts it this way; they aren’t worried about having to respond to a terrorist attack, because they are sure that those of us who carry concealed will end the attack, before any of them can respond.

10. We Can’t Let the Terrorists Win

If there’s anything the United State of America stands for, it’s freedom. We have been the light of freedom in the world for over 200 years, exporting our brand of government to other countries. While we are not perfect, we are the best hope of mankind. That cannot be lost.

While Muslim extremists are not the only terrorists out there, they make up more than 90% of the active terrorist organizations in the world. As such, they are clearly responsible for the vast majority of terrorist incidents. That is the terrorism we must fight against. It’s not the only terrorism we face, but it is the largest threat.

Islam is totally contrary to freedom; it is all about submission to their god. Anyone who does not submit is to be killed or enslaved. Allowing the terrorists to win, condemns us and our children to these two possible fates.

Our freedom is hard bought, with the blood of patriots. Some of them died in the twin towers, 16 years ago. We must not let the freedom they bought us go.

Lest we forget.

 

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

Where Things Stand With North Korea

Click here to view the original post.

Problems with North Korea are nothing new. Ever since the closing days of World War II, this small country has tried to take on the world with their bravado and fiery rhetoric.

Almost 70 years ago, that broke out into the first Korean War on June 25, 1950. Now they’re scratching the surface again…

The only reason why North Korea wasn’t annihilated as a political entity and absorbed into the nation of South Korea was that China came into the war once American forces got close to the Yalu River; the boundary between North Korea and China.

Concern that American forces wouldn’t stop at the Yalu, not a love for North Korea, caused China to enter that war, pushing American and South Korean forces back past the 38th parallel and forcing an armistice.

The reason why the Chinese wanted to protect North Korea is that they see the small country as a buffer. So North Korea serves an important purpose for them, as part of their defensive perimeter.

Given that, it’s no wonder that China has stood behind North Korea, as they have tried to bully the rest of the world.

So the problems we currently have with North Korea aren’t anything new. The only new aspect of them is that North Korea is finally reaching their long-stated goal of developing nuclear tipped missiles. Recent test launches show that they have finally developed an ICBM which will reach American cities, making their threat to rain nuclear war down upon us much more real.

Living in Suicidal Denial

American media and the intelligence community have had a hard time accepting North Korea’s success in missile and nuclear technology.

Denial after denial has come forth, downplaying the success that they have had and making it seem like it will be years before Km Jong-un can be a real threat to our nation’s security.

But while this has all been going on, North Korean engineers and scientists have been working hard to fulfill their dictator’s goals.

As we’ve watched missile test after missile test, we’ve been hearing over and over again that it didn’t matter, because North Korea still had to learn how to miniaturize their warheads, so that they’d fit on the missile. But that’s been a false narrative, given to use as a placebo, so we wouldn’t worry.

 

This smart device will help you slash an excess of 70% off your power bill overnight…

 

You see, one thing that has been kept secret from the US population is that North Korea already has miniaturized nuclear warheads. That information was found out and reported during the Obama presidency. But since it went against Obama’s agenda, the report was buried and we were all led to believe that North Korea wasn’t as ready as their missile program made it seem they were.

This hit a whole new level last Sunday, as North Korea did another nuclear bomb test; the first since last September. While any nuclear bomb test is something worth noting, this one is attracting a lot of attention.

Video first seen on euronews (in English).

The reason is that according to the official North Korean state news, this was a hydrogen bomb, the first such bomb built by the North Koreans. Producing roughly ten times the explosive yield of any previous test, this one caused an earthquake measured at a 6.3 magnitude.

The epicenter of the earthquake was less than a mile from the last underground test the hermit kingdom had, increasing the credibility that this was an actual nuclear weapons test, even if it wasn’t a hydrogen bomb. Shock waves from the test were felt in both South Korea and China.

Are We Heading to Disaster?

So we need to ask the question… Is North Korea really ready to launch a nuclear-tipped missile at the United States?

The answer to that question is probably yes… and no.

From what we’ve seen of the North Korean tests, they really haven’t mastered the fine art of missile manufacturing. Their success rate still isn’t 100% or anywhere close to it. Nor do we know of if they have figured out how to protect their warheads from heat on reentry, a minor technical problem that could render their nukes ineffective.

But that’s assuming American ideas about success rates. We expect every missile we launch to work perfectly. A 98% success rate isn’t good enough.

But if Kim Jong-un is willing to roll the dice, realizing that not all his missiles will function perfectly, he could launch an attack right now. At least some of his nukes would reach their mark, or at least close enough to their mark to give him success.

Since Kim Jong-un isn’t planning on shooting his first ICBMs at the American mainland, his chances of success are probably even higher than 50%.

Recent statements he’s made indicate that he has Guam in his sights right now. Perhaps he thinks we will be impressed by his restraint in not destroying a major American city with his nukes, but rather going after a Pacific island which has been a major American military stronghold since before World War I.

So why would Pyongyang threaten Guam, rather than one of our major population centers here at home? Besides the fact that it’s a closer target, making it easier to attack; Guam is a major part of the US Military’s plans for any action in Asia. As our closest major base to North Korea, any attack we might need to make against the hermit kingdom will use Guam as a staging base. The naval base there would probably become the most important logistics hub in that effort.

Attacking Guam would also be attacking American citizens, as the people of Guam hold American passports. That’s not even including the thousands of American military personnel who are stationed there. That would be a direct attack against our military, something that’s considered an act of war in anybody’s book.

The threat of North Korea attacking Guam has supposedly reduced a little, with North Korea stating that they are going to “watch a little more of the foolish and stupid conduct of the Yankees.”

Why is that? Probably because of statements by President Trump and Secretary of Defense Mattis, both of whom have made it clear that any attack by North Korea would be met with the full force and fury of the United States military.

Who’s Cards Is China Playing?

But there’s another factor coming into play here that might be scaring Pyongyang even more than statements by Donald Trump and General Mattis, that is that China has made it clear that they won’t support North Korea in any attack they make against the USA.

This is something that President Trump has been pushing for ever since taking office. As North Korea’s major trading partner and protector, China has a major influence on the actions of the North Korean leadership. Kim Jong-un might be a dictator and might think he’s the toughest kid on the block, but when it all comes down to it; he needs the backing of China to do anything.

But obviously, we don’t want it to come down to North Korea launching a nuke at anyone. The question then becomes how to stop them?

That’s where politicians, military planners and pundits all disagree. Former President Obama tried appeasement, just as he did with Islamic terrorists.

But appeasement doesn’t work against countries which are hell-bent on destruction. There is absolutely no indication that North Korea took any more notice of Obama’s foreign policy, than to see it as an opportunity to continue their testing, without interference from the United States.

The South Korean president, Moon Jae-in, has favored a similar philosophy, wanting to open a dialog with the North, with the hope of renewing the “Sunshine Policy.” The idea behind this is to lure the North into disarmament through engaging them economically. However, those efforts have failed.

Actually, the North Korean government has been totally opposed to any sort of negotiations, preferring to use angry rhetoric and threats instead. They have taken a hard line to any South Korean or American military presence at all in the area.

Specifically, they have objected for years to joint exercises between North Korean and American military force. As far as they are concerned, American and South Korean military presence in the region is a provocation.

President Trump and his Secretary of Defense, General Mattis, have taken the opposite approach to the North Korean problem, standing strong against this adversary. While that seems to be having some effect, at least in making the North Koreans take pause, it is yet to be seen how much overall effect it will have over the long term. While it may delay action by the north, that doesn’t mean that it will succeed in bringing such action to a complete standstill.

A large number of options are on the table and being looked at by President Trump, Defense Secretary Mattis and their advisors. One of the difficulties they face is that the North Korean missiles are all mounted on mobile launchers.

So the possibility of a preemptive strike taking out all of the North Korean missiles is extremely low. Should such an attack fail, it is almost guaranteed that North Korea will make good on their threats and launch a nuke at the USA.

Where Do We Go From Here?

It is clear that the crisis with North Korea isn’t ending anytime soon, and short of another Korean War, it might never end. Continued diligence is essential, as North Korea continues to test their missiles. Any one of those could actually be more than a test, should they decide to arm one secretly.

Just a few days ago, North Korea launched three medium-range missiles into the Sea of Japan, with one of them actually overflying Japanese airspace. This has surely attracted the attention of our Japanese allies, as it was a direct threat against them. Pyongyang claims that the threat was supposed to be against Guam, rather than Japan, but if that’s true, their aim was off by a good 60 degrees or more.

It is clear that the North Korean’s aren’t going to stop their missile testing program. This could be nothing more than thumbing their collective nose at US and UN demands; but it doesn’t really matter the motivation.

Each launch teaches them more about making their missiles function properly, so that when they do finally want to launch a nuclear-tipped missile, their chances of success will be higher.

Will they launch such an attack? Nobody knows. I don’t even think they know themselves. I would say that chances are high that they eventually will. You can’t put as much effort into such a program, literally starving your population to fund it, and not have anything to show for it. They need results.

Sadly, the results they get may not be the results they want. But in this day and age aggressive action by one nation-state against another is considered unacceptable. We cannot simply turn out head and ignore it, if they actually launch a nuclear-tipped missile at American territory or the territory of any of our allies.

For the sake of protecting the world, we would be forced to act as President Trump said, raining “fire and fury” down upon them.

The sad victims of all this will be the people of North Korea, those who are blindly following their leader, cut off from the rest of the world. They are being fed nothing but a diet of lies, as their “beloved leader” twists the tail of the tiger, daring it to bite. When it does, they will be the ones to die, not the dictator who is gambling their lives like poker chips.

As the governor of Guam said, “I am glad that we have a man like Donald Trump at the helm. One who will make clear statements and who is not afraid to make the tough decisions when it comes to our enemies.”

He may soon need to make those tough decisions and I can only hope that the information that is being given him is true and accurate, so that he can make the best possible decision in the defense of our country.

What can you do is to prepare yourself for the worst, and expect for the best!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.

The Devastation Of Hurricane Harvey

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The recent arrival of Hurricane Harvey is somewhat personal for me. Early Friday morning, before it made landfall, radar course projections showed it heading right for my home. Since I only live 90 miles inland, we would have been hit hard by the 130 plus mile-per-hour winds and torrential rainfall.

But Harvey made a course change just before landfall and passed north of our home, leaving us safe.

But that doesn’t mean that Harvey was safe by any means.

As a Category 4 hurricane, Harvey’s winds are strong enough to tear buildings apart. It has dumped somewhere over nine trillion gallons of water on Texas, devastating Corpus Christi, Houston and many smaller towns.

While there has only been five reported deaths as of this writing, billions of dollars worth of property has been destroyed. This hurricane could very well be the most devastating to hit our country since Katrina, topping Sandy in total dollars of destruction.

Part of what has made Harvey so destructive is that it has moved very little since hitting the Texas coast, dumping trillions of gallons of water in what is really a rather small amount of space. By the time all is said and done, Houston is projected to end up receiving around 50 inches of rain.

This rain is what is going to end up causing the biggest part of the damage, as the winds started dying down as soon as Harvey made landfall. By the time the weekend was over, less than 48 hours after hitting, Hurricane Harvey had been downgraded to a tropical storm.

But I’m sure that’s no consolation to the residents of Houston, Galveston and the surrounding areas, whose homes have several feet of water flooding them. Many of those homes will never be the same.

Harvey isn’t done with its destruction either.

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As of this writing, the storm is still dumping rain on Houston, as well as moving farther to the east. Louisiana seems to be next on its dance card, as the storm moves towards the northeast. Lake Charles is already experiencing Harvey’s wrath and New Orleans could be in for some heavy rainfall as well, before it’s all over.

As with every natural disaster, nature couldn’t care less about the devastation that it is causing. We think we are so powerful, with our technology and our machines, but all it takes is one storm to break down this house of cards we call civilization.

Maybe it’s Time to Refocus Our Prepping

It’s no wonder that prepping is growing in the United States. The American people are finally waking up to something our ancestors knew, that life is fragile and nature is a killer. Even without the help that we humans give it in killing our fellow man, nature does a good enough job on its own, killing thousands of people per year.

As preppers, we love to talk about preparing for “the big one.” It doesn’t matter that that big one is a total breakdown of society, a financial collapse, an EMP attack or a zombie apocalypse, we have a plan for it.

But the reality is, we’re much more likely to face a natural disaster in our lifetimes, than any of the major disasters that we prep for.

Granted, much of the same preps need to be made for a natural disaster as those we need to make to survive a hurricane. More than anything, it’s the aftermath we’re prepping for, not the disaster itself.

Living through the destructive power of a hurricane or other natural disaster may be difficult, but nobody is going to starve or die of dehydration in a few hours or days. Living through weeks of outages, when there is no power or water and the grocery stores are empty is what we prepare for.

While the effects of an EMP are nationwide, on a local level they aren’t much different than any other disaster. The big difference is that Uncle Sam won’t be coming in to rescue us and help us to restore our lives. That’s going to have to happen on a local level, because the communications necessary to do anything on a national level won’t exist anymore.

What that means is that the aftermath is going to be much longer, straining our ability to survive, even if we are prepared.

But food is food and water is water. We will need both to survive anything that comes our way. Likewise, we will need most of the other things we stockpile. Even so, there are specific things that we will need, which are totally dependent on the type of disaster we end up facing.

Surviving a Flood

Hurricanes cause devastation in two ways; through wind and through water. While high winds can destroy many structures, it is ultimately the flooding that does the greatest damage. That will definitely be so in the case of Harvey, as the high winds dropped off almost as fast as they climbed.

Video first seen on The Alex Jones Channel.

So how do you prepare for this sort of flooding? Can you save your home, and if so, how? What can you do to survive, if your home becomes flooded, making it inhabitable?

First of all, this storm, like others in the past, demonstrates the reason why we all need a good bug out plan in place. While Houston officials didn’t call for a general evacuation, the state’s governor recommended it to those who could. This raises the question of why a general evacuation order didn’t go out.

It really boils down to experience and history. When Hurricane Rita was headed towards Houston in 2005, a general evacuation was called. Six-and-a-half million Houstonites took to the roads, creating a 100 mile long traffic jam that lasted for over a day and a half. There wasn’t enough gasoline available to fill that many vehicles, causing many to run dry and be abandoned on the road. People died from the heat, as well as from traffic accidents.

After all that, Hurricane Rita only struck Houston with a glancing blow, not even worth the effort that had been taken to avoid it. Hurricanes are always unpredictable, and this is just one more example of how the best of our planning may only be for naught.

We cannot rely on the government to tell us when to evacuate; we’ve got to make that decision for ourselves.

In the case of Hurricane Rita, the city government was wrong in telling people to evacuate. Now, in the case of Hurricane Harvey, the city government was wrong in telling people to stay home. But in both cases, the decision that was made was based upon the best information available. It’s just that nature doesn’t follow our information.

Waterproof Your Stockpile

I don’t know how much money you have invested in your survival stockpile, but I’m sure it’s in the thousands. Food is expensive, so if you’re going to have enough to last you any time, you’re going to have to spend a lot of money.

That’s an asset you can’t afford to lose, even in a flood. So you want to make sure that you won’t. How? By doing everything you can to ensure that it is waterproof. Canned goods already are, so that’s not an issue. Dry foods stored in five gallon buckets are waterproof as well. But what about everything else? How’s your toilet paper supply; is it protected from the water?

In some cases, you can ignore waterproofing if you can store the items on the second floor of your home. I have a lot stored under the second floor eaves of my home, where it is fairly well protected from flooding. Unless the roof gets torn off my home, I won’t have to worry about losing it.

But many people have their stockpile in the basement of their home; the first place that will flood. If that’s the case, you want to be extra careful about waterproofing it. You also want to have a plan for moving those supplies upstairs, if your home starts to flood. Otherwise, you won’t be able to use any of them until the flood waters subside, simply because you won’t have access to them.

Another possibility for protecting your stockpile is to keep some of it off-site, hopefully on higher ground. That way, if your home floods, you will still have access to supplies. You can use the remotely stored supplies until your home gets to the point where you can have access to those supplies once again.

Keep in mind that your supplies are more for surviving the aftermath, than for surviving the disaster itself.

So just because your home floods and your supplies are underwater, doesn’t mean that you’ve lost them, assuming that they are properly waterproofed. You will need those supplies as you are trying to salvage what you can from your home and put your life back together.

Protect Your Home

American homes don’t handle flooding well. They are not made of materials that can withstand sitting in water for minutes, let alone days. Drywall will soak up water rather quickly, falling apart. Even the structural studs and plywood that makes up the wall structure, floors and outer sheathing of our homes can be destroyed by too much water.

Chances are that if your home floods and the flood waters stay in place for days, your home will be totally destroyed. But if the flood abates quickly, you may be able to salvage it. Carpeting, drywall and other materials will need to be replaced; but if the structural part of your home survives, it can be rebuilt.

In Mexico and in many other emerging countries, homes are built out of cinder blocks and cement. While that may not make for as nice a home, it handles flooding much better.

I have some friends in the state of Tabasco, in Mexico, whose home has flooded several times. In each case, they’ve moved the furniture to the second floor and waited it out. Once the flood waters abated they were able to clean their homes up, repaint them and put their lives back together. That’s a whole lot easier than rebuilding an American home.

Since our homes are not made that way, we need to consider trying to protect them from flooding altogether. That may be too expensive for any of us to do, but we should at least look at it.

The most common way of protecting a home or other building from flooding is to make a wall of sandbags around it, with space between the sandbags and the home. That way, any water that seeps in can be pumped out; and yes, water will seep in.

Doing this takes a lot of sandbags and a lot of sand. The wall has to be unbroken all the way around, with all of it built to a uniform height. One dip or gap makes the whole thing invalid, as the water can pour through that one spot, flooding your home.

There are other, more modern options, which have been developed for use, instead of sandbags. While these are probably more expensive than building a sandbag wall, they are also probably easier to use. essentially the idea is to create a wall out of water filled plastic tubes, two to three feet in diameter.

This wall does the same thing that the sandbag wall does, but is considerably easier to erect. A couple of different companies make these tubes, so you might want to look into them.

Stay Prepared to Bug Out

No matter what you do, always keep yourself ready to bug out. Let’s say that you decide to ride out a hurricane that’s heading for your city, like the people in Houston did. That’s your decision to make. But don’t leave yourself without options. Make sure you always have a way to escape, should it come down to that.

What do I mean by that? Either have a four-wheel-drive vehicle that is high enough to ford the waters or some sort of boat, even a raft, that you can paddle out of there. if your answer is a truck or SUV, then make sure you leave before the water gets too deep to use it.

If it’s a boat, you’ve got more time. But in that case, you want the boat ready to use, moored to your home, where you can get into it from a second-story window.

Granted, a boat is an expensive investment, especially if you’re not going to use it for fishing. But a rubber life raft is much cheaper. For that matter, a large air mattress will work, if you don’t have anything else. Just make sure that you always leave yourself an option, so that you don’t have to go down with the sinking ship.

Whatever you do, stay lert and be prepared to face the unexpected, so you and your family survive!

This article has been written by Bill White for Survivopedia.