Doomsday Preppers? You’ve GOT to be kidding me…

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This post was written exactly 4 years ago, on my Facebook page. I still stand by it. Rich Fleetwood – February 7, 2012 · Riverton · Watching “Doomsday Preppers” on NGC this evening, with an as objective as possible viewpoint. I’ve been doing this stuff myself for 20 years, and in my position and experience, with the […]

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20 Best Prepper and Survivalist Shows on Netflix

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20 Best Prepper and Survivalist Shows on Netflix Ever since 9/11 there have been all sorts of prepper and survivalist shows popping up. Even more so since the financial crisis: Dual Survival, Doomsday Preppers, The Colony, and many others. A growing number of people are becoming aware of the fragility of the modern world, and …

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Survivor Jane on The Prepping Academy

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Survivor Jane on The Prepping Academy Forrest Garvin “The Prepping Academy” On this episode of The Prepping Academy Forrest and Kyle will be interviewing Survivor Jane. Jane is city-girl turned prepper/homesteader after moving to the Appalachian Mountains from the metropolitan city of Orlando. She is the creator and editor of the disaster survival and preparedness website HERE . Her … Continue reading Survivor Jane on The Prepping Academy

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Preppers Learn From Terrorism

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By Richard Bogath You don’t need me to tell you how tragic the recent terrorist events have been. By now, respectfully, you’re probably even sick of hearing about it. As most of the huddled masses clench their fists in anger, swearing acts of vengeance and pounding their chests in defiance of terrorism—most are also pretty […]

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It’s Getting Crazy Out There – Don’t Be Distracted! An Open Letter to Family & Friends

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Open Letter1

I first penned this letter in December 2011.  Back then, I was very concerned about our world and the direction that I saw it going.  The signs have been there for a while.  For those paying attention, looking, researching and reading, you could easily find a myriad of problems that point to how fragile our world, country, state… is.  But now, the problems are glaring and in your face!  You really have to be Mary Poppins to think there isn’t “something” wrong!

From our economy, to terrorism, to natural disasters, to deadly viruses, crime and more, you can easily find reasons to be concerned for yourself and your family!

The thing is, many of the problems that can arise because of these issues can be mitigated if you just put a little effort into being prepared.  Many of you won’t though because you are too distracted with “living the dream” and having fun or you just are irresponsible!  Responsibility is a problem in today’s world!  We all want the government or some other entity to come through for us!  And what if they don’t?  Are you willing to have your family staring you in the face, wanting to know what to do because they are in a desperate situation that could have been avoided or not as bad because you weren’t man enough to make some decisions and get off your butt!

People always ask, what if I prepare and nothing happens?  Well I say, that is good!  You don’t really want anything to happen!  You don’t want terrorist to hack the electric grid and be without power for however long!  You don’t want the economy to tank and possibly lose your job!  You don’t want the drought in California to effect the food supply so much that you forgo buying fruit because it is too expensive!  You don’t want any of that stuff to happen!  But if it does….you wan to be ready!

Being prepared doesn’t mean you go buy a lot of camo, guns and go out into the woods.  Being prepared or living a prepared lifestyle just means you live responsibility by planning, thinking ahead and putting some things back for a rainy day!  There are so many aspects to it and each family is going to be different!  But failing to plan and prepare is setting your family up to fail!

You will tell that my letter below is a lot “softer” than what I’ve written above!  Back then, I didn’t want to freak people out.  I wanted them to think critically!  But now, I think people need a wake-up call!

After you read the letter below, I would be happy to answer any questions or point you to resources that can explain your question in better detail!

Peace,
Todd
July 2015

An Open Letter to Family & Friends

 

I’m writing this letter because I care about you.  Please take a few minutes to read it and think about what I’m saying.

Why the Letter?

Our lives are crazy.  We take care of our family, work, eat, play chauffeur, pay the bills, etc.  When we have a little bit of free time, we like to just veg in front of the TV and watch some brain numbing pictures flicker across the screen.  We can go at it like this for days, weeks and even months, not knowing what is going on in the world outside our local community and just get by with the talk around the water cooler.

And when we take life in these little chunks, separate blocks of our time and attention, it seems a little bit more manageable.  We move from one task, event, errand, chore to the other.

The problem is when we look at our lives from a big picture perspective.  What if our lives, all of the sudden changed?  What if the stress of the day came bearing down at you all at once?  How could this happen?  This can easily happen during an emergency.  I’m not talking about your son just stuffed his GI Joe down the toilet, or the dog is out of food emergency.  I’m talking about the BIG stuff.

The Big Emergency

The BIG emergency is the one that stops you in your tracks.  It can be personal, based in your local community or worldwide.  But it is the one that everything else stops and all resources and energy are put towards it.

The problem is that most people are not prepared for the BIG one.

Prepared?

Are you and your family most people?  Do you have an emergency fund for financial emergencies?  Do you have insurance for medical emergencies?  Do you have food and water if there is a food supply/transportation emergency?  Do you have other means of cooking and preparing your food if utilities weren’t available?  Do you have first aid supplies and extra medicine on hand?  Do you have basic skills that could help you: fire starting, water purification, gardening, first aid, etc.?

This is the whole reason for my letter.  I want to help you see the importance of being prepared and to start being more self-reliant.  It’s not too hard, but it does take time, planning and effort.  But then again, what would the time, planning and effort that you put in ahead of time be worth in the middle of an emergency?  You’ll be glad you did!

Action Steps

  1. Make a planWhat are you preparing for?  What needs to be done?  Don’t look at the magnitude of the plan, that can be overwhelming. Take it in chunks.  In reality, you will never be “prepared.”  You can be “not prepared” or “overly prepared,” but never “perfectly prepared.”  Consider the basics: financial, medical, etc…but also keep in mind your region of the country; hurricanes, tornados, earthquakes, fires, etc…

 

  1. Set goals– When do you want _____ accomplished?
    1. Get a 3 day supply of food.  Then move to a 3 week supply.
    2. Revisit insurance: house, vehicle, medical, life, etc…
    3. Think about home and personal security.
    4. Start an emergency fund – 3-6 months of expenses
    5. Start a garden
    6. Take a class: first-aid, sewing, gardening, firearm, wilderness survival
    7. Watch some videos on Youtube (search preparedness)
    8. Read blogs and articles on “preparedness” and “prepping

 

  1.  Get active – go meet your goals!

 

Warning

The world of preparedness/prepping can be an addictive one.  It can suck you in, mess with your emotions and get you seeing the world in the fragile states that it is in.  It is always best to approach preparedness within community.  You should go it alone only if no one else is willing.  Eventually, they will realize that you were right, even if that is in the midst of a storm.

Fragile

It is not in the scope of this letter to discuss all the possible emergency scenarios that you should prepare for.  But outside of regional, natural disasters, it is important to me to briefly mention our global situation.  Things outside our local community have gone from bad to worse!  At first, we might not care about what is going on in some Asian or European country, but the fact is that we are ALL tied into each other now.  What happens over there, affects us over here.

There are many “End of the World as We Know It” type scenarios out there.  One such scenario is an economic collapse.  Someone recently replied to me and said, “Yes, times can get hard, but we have been through it before during the Great Depression.”  The fact is that it is way different this time.  Our country didn’t have the debt that we have now.  And, if for some reason the world loses faith in our government’s ability to pay its debts, we are up the creek.  It really isn’t too far-fetched to imagine this happening if you’ll look into it.  The concern has gone beyond the foil hat people.  Just research it!

Do Something

Please take this letter seriously.  If you prepare and don’t need it, the worst is that you have some food (food costs are going up/buy now at cheaper prices) and other supplies.  But if you ever find you are in a position that you do need it, you and your loved ones will be glad you were prepared!

Turning the Tables on an Active Shooter

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I don’t need to list the most recent attacks on unarmed civilians that have taken place in the past year or even past month to get my point across. Violent attacks are clearly on the rise with attackers ranging from pissed off former employees to religious fanatics and everything in-between.



You need to come to terms with the fact that you can never be prepared enough to prevent an attack from happening. You will not be able to grab your battle rifle, plate carrier, and call the police prior to getting attacked unless you are in your home, awake, and near your gear.

 

It is more likely you will be vulnerable and wearing what you are wearing now in a crowded public place or alone in unfamiliar territory. Hopefully you have a pistol and or knife on you to give you an edge on your would be attacker/attackers. If it all possible dialing 911 should always be your first action when you get the feeling your life is in danger.


If you are in a situation where your life is in danger and you can dial 911 without sacrificing safety:

·         Dial 911

·         Put your phone to speaker

·         Put the phone in your pocket so you have use of both hands

·         Describe your surroundings to the dispatcher in great detail

·         Seek cover or a safe zone

·         Prepare to defend yourself until help arrives

Leave the square ranges for BZO
A great way to prepare yourself is to break away from relying on square ranges and bulls-eye targets as a sufficient means to becoming an effective defensive shooter. Square ranges are meant for zeroing firearms and marksmanship training, not drawing from your holster and moving to cover in order to land some well-placed shots on target. If you don’t have access to a range or facility that allows dynamic training or scenario training try some of these simple drills in the comfort of your own home. Make a room clear of all ammo and never bring ammo or loaded guns in there, practice drawing and reloading your cleared gun or blue gun for a few minutes a day so you become comfortable drawing and acquiring a target after seeking cover.


 

Dry firing is great practice but it’s just that, so once you feel you have mastered drawing your pistol, clearing malfunctions, reloading, etc. Seek out courses and training that is geared towards active shooters and concealed carry scenarios. Do your research and make sure the course is run by a professional that has a verifiable background in firearms training and is insured. This day and age there are folks who grow a beard, buy some gear and call themselves a firearms instructor. Please make sure these people have actual credentials that mean something. The NRA is a great source for finding quality instructors as well.

Airsoft is a highly underrated and affordable way to do force on force training that allows you to actually shoot people and to get shot without actually dying.

Let’s run with that idea:

·       Get the airsoft equivalent of your carry pistol and a training knife

·       Make a friend do the same

·       Get proper protective equipment

·       Find a safe private place (so people don’t think it’s real)

·       Create 5 scenarios where you are vulnerable (Entering/leaving vehicle, asleep in bed, taking a poop, walking your dog)

·       Get attacked and take note of what works and doesn’t for you

·       Start timing closing speeds of an attacker in unknown distances to evaluate what reaction fits the situation

Yup, you will look like a total freak doing these exercises but looking like an idiot when training may just be enough to give you the edge if you were to be attacked or became involved in an active shooter situation.


Physical fitness can never be stressed enough for this subject. Close quarters confrontation,  gun free, and knife free zones leave you with only your physical skillset to keep you safe and alive.

If you are legally permitted to carry a concealed firearm you should never leave your home without your pistol and a spare magazine.

My EDC, within arms reach 24/7

For some added firepower and magazine capacity consider storing a rifle in your vehicle, but be cognizant of local laws prior to doing so. Rifle manipulation in a vehicle is frustrating at best so look into acquiring an AR or AK pistol.

My work in progress AR pistol

These rifle caliber pistols are relatively new to the market and have tremendous benefits. Especially if you value maneuverability in tight places such as a vehicle or in your home.


It’s a shame the cameraman didn’t have a gun

 You can be that person who spends their last moments with their hands up begging for mercy or you can be prepared and give yourself that chance to fight back and stop a tragedy. What do you do to keep as prepared as possible?


Stay Fit and Keep that Warrior Mindset!

Combative Pistol 1 with ORS

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This is just a brief summary of the pistol course I took with ORS recently. I trained with Olmsted Risk Solutions about 8 months ago at the Defensive Preparedness Summit; you can read the summary of that here. This course was different in that the focus was on pistol employment in a day to day scenario.

 

Lance discussing techniques
Within minutes of the class commencing I noticed improvements on my grip and draw, we did a few drills that focused on grip and trigger control. It is amazing how a little rain and a cold wind can add an added value to the training.

I don’t think he’s going to make it

Range selfie
Combative Pistol 1 took place at the range which is genius, most CCW courses take place in a house or a Holiday Inn and spend almost the entire time talking about a bunch of crap that you don’t need to know. In this class we discussed what to do in the event we do have to use deadly force. The CCW course I took back in Massachusetts never once discussed using our pistol when our lives are in danger, we didn’t even talk about shooting the pistol properly!

I can’t say enough good things about this course, Lance clearly has his shit together and is among the rising number of people in the firearms world who focus on what is important when it comes to the gun and how to use it.

Lance and I did a brief video summarizing the class as well.
 
I promised it would be brief so here it is! Any questions about this course of upcoming classes please contact ORS directly here.



The Ivans awaiting some more lead

Bugout Bag = Get Home Bag

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As a self-proclaimed minimalist when it comes to all things prepared I wanted to give my 2 cents on the Bugout Bag and the Get Home Bag.

These two items seems to have quite the debate on what the contents should be and the more pushy types on the forums tend to be of the mind that if you don’t use the same designer bag as them that you are woefully under-prepared.

Let’s squash that here, who gives a shit what brand bag you have, the things that matter in regards to the bag are:
  •  Durability
  • Volume of storage
  •  Comfort
  • Ease of concealment

I could add a few more but after the big 4 it really is just a matter of opinion, these four characteristics should be the end all and be all when shopping for the actual bag. I prefer a simple Alice Pack with no frame or a plain high school book bag if keeping a low profile.


Guru left his Warrior Mindset at Taco Bell
I feel the Bugout Bag and Get Home Bagare one in the same; the only difference is a get home bag is typically on you or in your vehicle and the bugout is in your home. They serve the same exact purpose; each bag is to only carry the minimal amount of supplies to get you from an unsafe location to a safer location.







This is the point where the forum guru tells me “What if the sky was pink and I was an elephant, you would need a full pack with months worth of food!” If you would like to carry a pack that weighs 30lbs or more be my guest. 

Keep in mind that you have this bag because it will have the supplies you need to get home or lead you to your bugout location. Chances are, if you need to use a bugout bag or get home bag that you will be running and running far. Keep It Simple Stupid or KISS is where your head should be when assembling this bag, think of the basics; Beans, Bullets, and Band-Aids.


Basic minimum essentials:

Are Preppers actually Prepared?

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Jungle Run at the Big Run Ranch 
When thinking of a prepper, most often we picture a person who has some sort of room in which they store massive quantities of supplies such as food, water, methods of self-defense and tools for hunting. They may have some limited training on survival or bush-craft and hopefully can properly utilize the firearms they spent all that hard earned money on. Ask a prepper what they are preparing for and they will mostly likely draw up some specific event or collapse of some kind. They may even go into their plans on how to survive it.


That sounds like a great plan right?

It sounds like they could live forever in their cozy secret squirrel location. If an intruder came they could defend their location with their armory. For me it sounds like borderline hoarding and they are not prepared for anything other than becoming a supply house for an intruder because they are a soft target. If you prepare yourself with purpose and maintain a flexible but firm preparedness philosophy you will be better off with very limited “Prepping” supplies and a shitload of training.


Don’t be this guy
Having more firearms than your team can carry by hand is stupid, plain and simple.  We are preparing for complete self-reliance not starting a firearm collection. Having too much of anything just means you wasted your time and money. You will potentially leave food and guns behind, to a possible threat to you, when you decide that you can’t take them when you bug out. I am sure by now you know how I approach preparedness.

Do you even prep, Bro?
I am a minimalist and I see that people are starting to get good at hoarding not preppingbecause it is easier to go to a store and buy gear and buy guns and ammo and to buy preassembled “Survival kits”. Someone please explain how buying an endless mountain of gear and supplies makes you prepared. That awful Doomsday Preppers atrocity is filled with commercials of washed up celebrities hawking crappy pre-packed meals. For a small fortune you have managed to prep without even leaving your couch. Spend a quarter of that money on some damn training and classes on how to grow food, how to dehydrate meals and how to pack them in a manner that will save your food for decades. We have gotten so lazy as a nation that we can’t even prepare for the Zombie Apocalypse ourselves!

We go to Ebay or Amazonand buy some Zombie survival kit or Prepping essentials kit because it’s easier than getting off of our fat pimply asses to do it ourselves. Do you actually think these stupid ass kits are assembled by someone who knows their shit? Does the username of the seller give you the sense of trust your very survival depends on? Zombiedude543 has a blue star rating so he must be legit, right?

A chicken for no reason

The difference between an individual who is prepared and one who is a prepper comes down to mindset and physical fitness. Take this post as a challenge to you to take a long look in your signal mirror and make the decision to up your preparedness game.

Are you prepared enough to even enjoy those freeze dried lasagna meals or the dreaded Country Captain Chicken MRE while the world turns into a shit sandwich all around you? Test yourself and document what your physical limits are now. Give yourself 4 months to make substantial gains in your strength and endurance. What is the point of spending your time and money on all this food, gear and training if you die of a heart attack trying to get to your bug out location? I am no model of physical perfection by any means trust me, but I work at making myself better every day. If your survival skills are up to par with your level of fitness there is little left to chance regarding your survival. It is solely upon you to change the terms that define you. Prepping is an action, not a way of life. The act of prepping is merely a small facet of what being prepared is. I hope you are getting sick of me saying this and you start to put these words into action. Having a whole mess load of instruments doesn’t make a musician; it’s what we do with the tools we amass that define us.


Stay fit and keep that Warrior Mindset!!

Preppers Are Crazy!

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If you have ever encountered “prepper flack” from loved ones, family or friends, here are some thoughts to bring peace to your mind and hopefully to theirs. And remember you need not prove to anyone your sanity for prepping.
Prepping is a personal choice. I think of it as insurance for the future. I buy other insurance so why not prepare for the most important things needed in case of loss from

10 SHTF Preppers Communications

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10 SHTF Preppers Communications

Top 10 SHTF Communications. Comms are vital in an emergency situation and Cell phones could be shut down in certain situations.
Cell Phone
Multi-Band Scanner
AM/FM Radio
Weather Radio
Shortwave Radio
FRS Radios
GMRS Radios
CB Radios
Marine
Ham / Amateur Radio
Tags: SHTF, Communications, Comms, Prepper, Survival, Survivalist, Doomsday Preppers