Monthly Archives: January 2013

Common sense planning

(Survival Manual/ Prepper articles/ Common sense planning)

Trust in Uncle Sam

With commonsense planning, you can survive hard times
January/February, 1999, Backwoods Home Magazine, Issue #55, by Jackie Clay
Pasted from: http://backwoodshome.com/articles/clay55.html

Today, many people are afraid that hard times are about to descend upon us because of the Y2K computer date problem, also known as the Millennium Bug. Others fear that the economic chaos occurring in Asia, parts of South America, and parts of Europe will engulf the United States, causing a Depression on the scale of the one that followed the 1929 stock market crash.

The scenario of a Y2K computer catastrophe, which self-styled experts say will begin January 1, 2000, goes like this: There will be general chaos and shutdowns of the computer-controlled delivery systems of American society. Grocery stores won’t get adequate food supplies, gas stations won’t get enough gas to pump, hospitals won’t get enough medicines, and government computers will fail to deliver social security, pension, welfare, and other government checks.

The computer-dependent banking industry will collapse, making it impossible for you to take your money out of the bank to buy food and other necessities. Planes that are allowed to fly will be unsure of their altitude or bearing because the government software they use will have become flawed. And the electrical grid will either collapse completely, or in huge sections, leaving millions of people without electricity to keep food cold, their homes warm, or the lights on.

People in the cities will panic. Not only might there be widespread rioting, but the panic may well spill over into the countryside, with hordes of people searching for a way out of the catastrophe. Lawlessness and violence will rule the resulting chaos, with gangs of desperate people doing what they feel they must to help their families survive.

The scenario is even bleaker in the event the world’s economic woes overtake the United States. Where the Y2K computer glitch is seen as causing severe hardship on a relatively temporary basis, an economic collapse is viewed as long-term. And it will be exacerbated because most people today live away from the land, unlike the 1930s when a significant portion of the population still understood how to grow their own food and otherwise fend for themselves.

Miscellaneous supplies to store up
• 25 pounds laundry soap
• 12 ea 28 oz. bottles dish soap
• 73 rolls toilet paper
• sanitary napkins in sufficient quantity
• 8 gallons bleach (used for sanitation as well as laundry)
• 12 bars hand soap
• 6 ea 24 oz. bottles shampoo
• personal products, such as toothpaste, deodorant
• chainsaw oil and other items to keep things running
• pet foods
• livestock feed
• 55 gallons kerosene for lighting
• 25 gallons Coleman fuel or other lantern fuel

To view this possible scenario, the experts say you have only to watch the evening television news and observe the woes of Russia where an entire nation has been cast into poverty. Or view the once mighty economic giant, Japan, whose stock market has declined 60%, or the formerly strong economies of Thailand, Indonesia, and South Korea, whose economies are down 70 to 90%. And lately South America has joined the casualty list. These countries are harbingers of what lies ahead for the United States, the doom and gloom experts say.

For many of these countries, families cannot pay their power and phone bills, food is in short supply, and other necessities needed to make life palatable have all but disappeared. Repossessions, and families being evicted from their homes, are common.

Sounds bad, doesn’t it? And it may or may not come true in this country. It happened before, the doom experts say, and it

can happen again. And this time, they say, Americans are even less prepared than they were in the 1930s.

Whether it happens or not, or even if it only partly happens, there are steps you and I can take now to prepare for any eventuality. And it’s a whole lot better to be prepared for something that may never materialize than to not be prepared for something that may hit in the year 2000, or next month.

This article, I hope, will help you prepare for any eventuality, whether it’s the Y2K Bug, a major economic collapse, an earthquake or hurricane, or even a death in the family that brings on hard times for you personally. The steps outlined below will also ensure a better quality of life if nothing every comes your way.

Finances first
While times are good, artificially or not, it’s time to work extra long hours and “kill the bills.” Just get out of debt. If you can’t see the way to pay off your $250,000 home, consider selling it and moving to a less expensive place. There are a lot of homes for under $50,000 available, in most locations, if you really look hard.

Consider fixer-uppers, longer commutes from a more rural setting. If your job is so-so, consider moving to a location that has cheaper housing and living expenses. Get your home debt free, as soon as you can. A homeless family is a refugee family. Never become a refugee! Can’t happen in this country? Think again. Check out the statistics for homeless people on the streets now. Sure some are addicted to drugs and alcohol, some too dysfunctional or lazy to “get a job.” But a lot are just plain hardworking people who have hit tough circumstances. Don’t put yourself in a position to become a refugee.

Pay off those credit cards, and put them in a top drawer. The interest is equal to that of “loan sharks” just a few years ago. A thousand dollar item can end up costing as much as three thousand, especially when you just pay the minimum each month, which is largely interest.

Get rid of all the “toys” you can: cable TV, the motor home you only use once a year, the vintage car in the garage, driven just to impress people, the new car in the garage (replace it with a good used one that you can quickly pay off), the extra vehicles you do not really need but are making monthly payments on. The vacation home could be replaced with one less expensive in a very rural location, to be used as a just-in-case retreat should urban or suburban life suddenly get too scary.

Sock away some hard cash. Yep, I sure know it’s awful hard, especially for we folk who are far from well-to-do. Even a few hundred dollars, especially if in coin or paper money turned to gold, could come in very handy. Don’t depend on banks. We use them, but would never, under the current economic climate, keep our savings in them. We would rather have real money where we can get it quickly…no matter what. FDIC insured? Yeah, right…when the country has more than a trillion in national debt…and no gold in sight? I don’t think so.

Prepare to live simply
Begin gearing up your household to run without electricity, which also probably runs your furnace and water well (or city water). In the Detroit suburbs, Dad had his own well.
Check out local regulations before drilling though, as in some areas, it is illegal. Personally, I would not live where there were such regulations, as it could be too dangerous should city water go out. A developed spring is an excellent source of dependable water, as you have water pressure without needing electricity.

A wood stove can be installed in most homes, in most locations, to provide emergency heat (and cooking). Other options include solar heat/cooking, which is legal most places, and propane, which will power a wall furnace or space heater, kitchen stove, lights, and refrigerator. A 500-gallon propane tank will last a long time when gas is used frugally. Beware of stoves with electric ignition or heaters that require fans to heat. No electricity = no heat. We’ve used a propane fridge for years, and like it much better than an electric one. You might consider switching before you need to.

Suggested   contents of a good medical kit
A good first aid book
Thermometer
Daily prescription meds for all family
members
Antibiotics
Ointments for the eye, fungus & cuts
Antidiarreal medication
Pain and anti-inflamitory medication
such as asprin
Burn treatment, such as Burn Free
Iodine/Betadine
Alcohol
Oral electrolytes (for dehydration from
fever, diarrhea, stress)
Cold remedies
Cough medicines
Cough drops/throat discs
Bandages
Gauze
Cotton
Surgical tape
Scissors
Hemostats
Tweezers
Needles to remove slivers
A dental kit to patch dentures,
replace fillings, etc.)
You may choose to include more, depending on your medical experience and background.

Store up fuel
Store up fuel for heating/cooking before you need it. Wood and other fuel can be stored a long time, will be cheaper before there is a great demand, and it will be easier to get. We have at least 12 cords of dry firewood in the lot, and only burn about one a year. It’s nice to have…just in case. Likewise, a barrel of kerosene is good insurance against spending dark evenings. You won’t be able to buy it during hard times, but it’s pretty cheap now.

Have alternative lighting, whether it is kerosene lamps, Coleman lamps, or propane wall lamps. Being poor and in the dark is not a good emotional combination. And be sure to have replacement wicks, globes, and other parts….just in case. We had one drop of condensation fall on a burning Coleman lamp, popping the globe instantly….and had to do without the lamp for a month, until we could get out of our snowed-in cabin for a replacement. Now we have replacements for each lamp type.

Store up some gasoline, where local regulations allow. With life-extenders, a barrel of gas can last a long time without getting too “old” to burn well. This gasoline can be used to travel or to cut wood to keep warm.

Food storage
Have enough food stored up for at least a year, preferably two. This seems basic, but I know very few people, especially those with good jobs and “normal” incomes, who have a full pantry. With today’s disposable society, many people shop daily for what they will eat for the next day’s meals. The pantry (if they even have one) shelves are empty or filled with junk.

I have written two major articles for Backwoods Home Magazine for the last two issues (Issue Nos 53 and 54) about preparing your food pantry. Read them.

We keep two years’ food stored up, from wheat to home-canned foods, just in case. We know we could never turn away hungry refugees without feeding them a good meal, especially if they were our neighbors or married children. Could you?

Medical needs
Build up an extensive medical kit. We use a large field box, which has two levels and many compartments. Get as much medical training as you can, such as EMT classes, held locally. You might not want to become an EMT, but you can learn much that will help your family in an emergency. Buy a good book or two, such as the Red Cross First Aid manual and the Merck Manual. Then stock up that medical kit.

Remember that “normal” things, such as cold medicine, may not be readily available.

Both my husband, a CNA, and I, a veterinary field technician, have extensive medical experience, so we include in our medical kit sutures and suture needles, injectable local anesthetic, an IV and IV electrolytes, epinephrine for shock due to allergies or drug reaction, a blood pressure cuff and stethoscope, plaster casting material, and more. One never knows if, and when, a doctor will be available during bad times. Of course, if a doctor is available, one should never attempt to treat their own or others’ injuries or illnesses.

 Other high priorities
A radio and batteries are other must-haves. This keeps you in contact with what’s going on in the world. There are several brands of solar-powered radios on the market today for not a lot of money. Batteries must be replaced or recharged. We also have a weather radio to keep up on weather conditions which can affect one’s life much more when times are tough. Listening to this 9-volt radio each morning keeps us in tune to Mother Nature.

Does your family have adequate warm, sturdy clothing? If not, this is a high priority. Buy good hiking boots, jeans, and clothing that is practical, long-lasting, and warm. If you never need ‘em, they won’t take up much space in a closet. If you do, they will become essential.
How about alternate transportation…not your car or pickup? Walking is fine, but doesn’t cover many miles in a day.

Some alternatives are bicycles, ATVs, motorcycles, snowmobiles (in snow country), and horses. All take much less gas to run than a car or truck, and bicycles and horses take none at all. Remember you don’t have to use a car or truck, even though you are used to it. The Amish and other plain people have always used horses and other non-motorized vehicles for travel, and in Europe and many other countries bicycles are the norm for a lot of folks.

Stay-at-home emergencies
Some emergencies, such as severe ice storms, power outages, and blizzards, occur every year or so in many cold-climate areas, more frequently in other areas. This past year El Nino has contributed to widespread flooding in areas unused to flooding, and to major storms in areas unused to major storms. All these things created emergencies that largely demand people stay where they are out of common sense.

Remember, without power, you will not have access to stores for food and supplies, banks and ATMs for cash, a flush toilet, drinking water out of the tap, your furnace fan (or heat at all, if you have a “modern” all-electric home), the electric kitchen stove, gas for your car, and many other “normal” conveniences you are used to.
The food in your refrigerator will slowly spoil and the food in your freezer will slowly thaw, then rot.
Luckily, there’s a lot you can do to keep on top of such a situation. Number one, begin a game plan of not depending on electricity. Power is fine. It’s handy, convenient, and easy. Just don’t depend on it.

Checklist for stay-at-home emergencies
• Food and water for family, pets & livestock for at least 14 days; 55 gallons of fresh water will last a family of four for over seven days.
• Daily medications for family for 14 days
• Alternative heat source & fuel
• Alternative cooking source & fuel
• Alternative lighting source & fuel
• Flashlights & batteries
• Transistor, crank or solar radio
• Medical kit
• Matches
• Butane lighters
• Magnesium, flint & steel fire starter

Getting along comfortably without electricity
Trade in your electric stove for a gas range that does not have electric ignition. It will work when there is no electricity. Better yet, buy a wood range for the kitchen or basement. Trade in your electric refrigerator for a gas unit. Not only will it run without power, but it keeps food much better and lasts for many more years. Have at least a back-up heating unit that does not depend on electricity to run or to power the fan. A wood stove, a propane or natural gas wall furnace, or a space heater are all more dependable than a central furnace requiring electricity to provide heat for the home.

Trust2Sanitary concerns
Build an outhouse. What? Yep, even if you live in the city, discreetly dig a hole and build a “garden shed” over it. UmHmm, I know it’s not “legal” in many localities, but in an emergency, you can use it and keep your home much more sanitary and sweet smelling. No emergency? Use it for a garden shed. Remember too that urine is normally sterile and can be diluted with water and poured around trees as nitrogen-rich fertilizer. If it is totally impossible to construct an outhouse, keep urine separate and dispose of discreetly. Solids may be buried daily or you can even use a “kitty litter” box, keeping them covered after each use. Toilet paper may be bagged and burned or kept for later dumping.

[Image: Survival doesn’t have to mean stark times of doing without]

 Alternative lighting
Decide on what emergency lighting you will use. A lot of folks prefer to buy a generator to power their entire home during a short to moderate power outage. We prefer not to have to depend on generators running 24 hours a day; we use one for an hour or so and then only as truly needed. Remember, gasoline or diesel fuel may be exceedingly hard to get. Don’t waste it for luxury. We have used propane wall lamps, which give good light and are cheap to run; Coleman lamps, which also give good light, but must be pumped up to pressure from time to time; and kerosene lamps. Candles can do once in a while, in a pinch, but are easily upset, and are dangerous to use. Be sure you have a good supply of matches, as you’ll need more than you think. A few butane lighters also come in handy. I also keep a flint, steel, and magnesium fire starter, just in case. The magnesium burns very hot so it will light a fire, whether your fuel is wet or dry. You can buy them at the Preparedness Expos all around the country.

Food and drink
Have enough food and emergency water stored up if you don’t have an alternative water supply, such as a well with hand pump, spring, or cistern. Never drink any surface water, such as from a lake or stream, that is not either filtered with a good filter to remove contaminants such as giardia, which causes terrific diarrhea, or boiled for five minutes after straining off the major silt. You can treat questionable water with iodine, in drop or tablet form, but personally, I think the taste is awful. I prefer boiling, cooling, then shaking the water container vigorously to re-oxygenate it, which dramatically improves the taste. Never drink any water from a lake or stream in or downstream from agricultural land (leaching nitrates from fertilizer) or factories/mines (heavy metals, toxic wastes), as these may escape all but the most expensive filters. Boiling will not make the water drinkable.

You can obtain water for washing and flushing the toilet from several sources: melting snow, ditches, ponds, livestock tanks, rivers, and other surface water.
These will all do the job. When your water goes into an urban sewer, be sure you can “dump flush” the toilet, however, as some systems depend on pumps (electricity) to move the sewage. Check it out before you need to.

Vehicle emergencies
A lot of our day-to-day emergencies involve being stranded with our vehicle. A mechanical failure, a flat tire, being stuck in the snow, stuck in the mud and so on can make life miserable. We need to make it less miserable—and not life-threatening as it can sometimes be.

Vehicular emergencies are compounded by other emergencies. If you are stranded in a blizzard, possibly because of an evacuation or civil disturbance, it can quickly lead to a life-threatening situation. You should prepare for these situations also.
It may seem basic, but always know where you are, and know the best route to take to get to where you are going. Carry and use a map.

In cities, avoid “bad” neighborhoods, even if it requires going out of your way. Pay attention to weather conditions when you drive, and prepare accordingly. It’s shocking to us to see folks in cars during cold, unpredictable winter weather, dressed in shorts and sandals. That’s playing Russian roulette. Wear warm clothes during cold weather, or at least have them with you, including warm socks and boots.

Even in summer take some warm clothes along with you. Some evenings get downright cold in many areas, especially when there is a drizzly rain pouring all night.
If the weather is really bad, don’t drive. Seems logical, but a lot of unprepared folks set out into the teeth of a blizzard or hurricane because nothing is going to disturb their plans. Waiting a day or two is a lot safer. Listen to a weather radio or current weather forecast before setting out. Even a four-wheel drive can run into icy roads or drifted snow and have trouble.

If you do get stuck or stranded by a mechanical failure in bad weather, stay with the vehicle. A lot of folks lose their lives by trying to hike for help. In a vehicle, there is absence of wind, making comfortable survival much more certain. Your candle can heat the inside, warn other motorists of your presence, and attract the attention of rescuers. But be careful! Everything inside a vehicle burns with toxic smoke and ignites easily. Keep a down-wind window cracked to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, especially if you run the vehicle (with the tailpipe in the clear) from time to time, to keep warm.

Checklist for vehicle emergency preparedness
• Jack & lug wrench
• Spare tire
• Shovel
• Battery jumper cables
• Basic tool kit
• Fix-A-Flat
• Oil
• Lighter air pump
• Gallon of drinking water
• Blankets
• Basic first aid kit
• Flashlight
• Emergency food
• Candles with matches
• Map
• Cell phone or C.B. can  be a life saver.

A plan, truck, survival pack for short-term evacuation
There are many situations where you may be suddenly called upon to evacuate your home: forest fire, hurricane, earthquake, chemical spills by truck or train, flood, or even radical emergencies such as terrorist activity or riots. To prevent panic, be prepared, much before anything of the sort happens.

We also have our favorite photo albums, important papers, and keepsakes localized for instant grabbing.
Have a “plan of action” worked out, discussed with all family members. Where you will meet? Who will carry what, and where you will go—a relative’s house, a campsite on state or federal land? If you always keep on top of the weather, the news, and local conditions, you will have a jump-start on evacuation, allowing you to prepare beforehand and avoid panic.

Remember, no personal goods are worth the life of a family member. If an intense hurricane or forest fire is headed your way, make ready to leave. Wet the roofs, batten the windows, do whatever you can do. But when it’s time to evacuate, get out before the roads jam with traffic.
Have the car/truck fully gassed up and carry some reserve gas in cans….just in case. Carry not only your “grab and get” supplies, but be sure you have maps and your vehicle emergency equipment, as well. Try to stay out of main traffic areas/jams and stay out of dangerous areas, i.e., near the path of a fire, the chemical spill, the riot, etc.

It’s a good idea if every member of the family has his/her own survival pack. Even a cheap backpack containing warm clothing, food, water, a lighter, candle,

Evacuation Needs

Storage food in large cooler #1
Instant potatoes
Dry milk
Canned tuna
Dehydrated eggs
Dry noodles
Flour
Shortening
TVPs
Dry soup mixes
MREs (military instant Rice
meals; meals ready to eat)
Dry beans
Margarine powder
Dehydrated fruit
Dehydrated vegetables
Tomato powder
Baking powder
Salt
Spices & condiments
Pudding mixes
Cornmeal
Instant coffee, tea, drink mixes
Sugar

Kitchen box in large cooler #2
Frying pan
Large pot
Smaller pot
Mixing bowl, steel (can double as cooking utensil)
Matches & lighters
Toilet paper
Paper towels
Dish towel
Dish soap
Candles
Dish scrubber pad
Bowls for family
Silverware for family
Metal spatula
Roll of duct tape
Small roll of wire
Metal cups for family
Small water filter
Propane stove & tanks
Flashlight & batteries
Hatchet

Medical   Kit (as previously detailed)

Sleeping Gear (in large plastic box)
Sleeping bags
Candles & lighters
Coleman lantern
Unopened gallon of lantern fuel
Bow saw
Warm socks & jackets
10′ x 12′ plastic tarp
lightweight tent
Radio

Rifle/shotgun and ammunition (food procurement, signaling,   and family protection)

Personal backpacks
Warm clothes
Emergency food
Socks
Stocking hat
Basic fishing gear without rod
Small first aid kit
Space blanket
Flashlight
Roll of wire & rope
Pocket knife
Canteen with cup
Lighter
A few dollars in quarters & bills

first aid supplies, etc. will provide extra security if family members become separated or if someone forgets something.

A survival retreat for long-term evacuation
All families today should have a safe place they can evacuate to should things get dangerous in their home area. This is especially true for city-dwelling people. Such possible realistic scenarios as riots, often due to poverty, hunger, and anger at situations that seem to have no resolution; terrorist activity, which even the government fears is on the imminent increase in the U.S.; missile destruction of areas, which will become more possible as desperate Russians sell missile technology to terrorists; and severe economic depression or collapse, which, considering the current global economic mess, may be the most likely scenario of all.

This retreat can be called a summer home, a vacation home, hunting cabin, or whatever. Calling it a survival retreat immediately brands you as a nut-case radical. Just quietly go about your business, not making waves or attracting attention, and secure your hideaway.

This safe spot should be located at least an hour’s drive from a city—two hours from a large urban area such as an L.A. or Chicago-type metropolis. A rural location is great, but a more remote place is even better. Some folks freak out at this, preferring a small rural town setting. That’ll work, too, as a close small community can work together. But we’ve found that is not always the case, and we prefer to keep to the boonies.

You want something with a little acreage in case you must raise all of your food. Some people claim you can raise all your family’s food on a small 50 x 50-foot garden. Nope, you can not! When you must can all winter’s food, raise all of your small grain and corn, and grow feed for any livestock you have (chickens, rabbits, etc)—and take into consideration weeds, drought, and predation—you will need more land, at least two acres to feed your family well.

Forget living off the land. This sounds radical for a self-reliant, wilderness-living person such as myself, but it’s true. Sure, one family can survive living off the land, but when a significant portion of the nation lives off the land, the game is quickly killed off. It happened during the homestead days all over the nation. Even Indians starved because they were forced to eat what they could scrounge up in a limited area (reservations), and there was not very much left.

It is a great idea to learn to supplement your diet with wild foods. (Supplement, not live off.) There are many wild plants that can regularly be incorporated into the daily meal plan that are not only readily available, but nutritious and tasty. A good book on the subject is Guide to Wild Foods by Christopher Nyerges, who writes frequently for BHM and whose book is available through the magazine. He also offers courses on wild foraging.

Experiment before you need to forage for dinner. Remember there are some poisonous plants that will kill you if you eat them. You need to learn the good from the bad, the edible from the tasty. Get Nyerges’ book.

Your retreat needs to have non-electric capabilities (or PV power), well or spring water, wood heat, and alternative lighting, with appropriate fuel stored up in advance.

The sooner you get started the better, for you can plant an orchard, berries, and perennial vegetables, such as Jerusalem artichokes, asparagus, etc., allowing time for them to mature to bearing age. You can also have adequate time to slowly stock up on food and other supplies, work the garden plot up very well, fence any land you need to, develop irrigation, etc.

Where should the survival retreat be located? That’s largely a personal preference. We love the very remote country: central Alaska, northern British Columbia, the Montana and Wyoming and Idaho high country. But it’s certainly not for everyone. Many more folks would be happier with the plains states: Maine, Arkansas, Missouri, or Minnesota. You can still find very rural areas, far from a freeway or big city, and find it easier to raise food for the family.

And the survival retreat does not need to be expensive. I have personally priced many retreats, in diverse locations, nationwide, priced below $35,000.

Choose the retreat with care, taking into consideration such things as nearness to a freeway (dangerous refugee traffic in some scenarios), nearness to a military or other strategic government location (possible missile or terrorist strike), nuclear plant (possible malfunction or terrorist strike), below a dam (possible rupture and flooding), or near any factory, chemical plant, etc.

The decision to evacuate
The decision to evacuate for long-term, perhaps forever, of one’s home is stressful and highly personal.

It’s best to leave before a situation becomes very serious. There are several reasons for this. First, there will still probably be gasoline available. The roads will be relatively uncongested, as most people have a tendency to wait until the last moment to leave, hoping desperately that things will get better. Travelling will be less stressful and much safer. A hoard of panic-stricken, angry, hopeless people, even the “nicest” people in the city, could become dangerous.

Take a good map and trace out a route, avoiding freeway-congested areas and large cities, even if it means going miles out-of-the-way. We would prefer to stick to back roads and minor highways. Drive this route often during normal times to familiarize yourself with it and work out any possible problems.

Trust3People today have largely become spoiled, being used to a relatively easy life (regardless of the stress of “the rat race”) with all the goodies and toys. They have forgotten how to live frugally, save money, provide for their own food, keep warm, safe, and dry.

[Moving into your survival retreat can be easy– if you plan ahead]

I know of one intelligent young man who went to Alaska to live off the land. He killed a moose, then later almost starved because he didn’t know how to preserve the meat. It rotted.

When people suddenly lose all they have: the homes that were not paid for, the easy living, and the well-paying job, they will panic, angrily demanding to remain in their past lifestyle. And angry “nice people” can get ugly.

During the last upheaval, the Great Depression, folks were much less spoiled, and for the most part they had basic living skills. Women knew how to garden, raise small livestock, make meals from scratch, make soap, sew clothes, etc. Men knew how to maintain machinery, raise crops, raise large livestock, cut firewood, etc. All, including children, knew how to work hard to survive. This is a skill greatly lost today, as are the basic living skills. And Depression-era folks had always known hard times, and they were more prepared to face them.

Our goal today should be to regain some of our independence and self-reliance, and to be prepared for any hard times in our future, whether they are slight, short lived, or more violent and long-term.

A year’s food supply for your family

This is a sample list for my family, which is a family of three. Your family needs may differ quite a bit, due to your meal preference. However, if you use this list as a base, you won’t go hungry. It also allows for “company”  meals. This is a realistic pantry supply to last a year comfortably. Remember to rotate your supplies, using the oldest first, replenishing as you use, in order to keep relatively fresh food stocks.
If you have a family of 4, increase the amount by 25%, a family of 6, by     50%, etc.

Grains
• 300 pounds of hard wheat or in     combination with 150 pounds of wheat and 150 pounds of flour.
• 50 pounds of dry corn to grind for cornmeal
• 50 pounds of soft wheat
• 50 pounds white rice
• 50 pounds brown rice
• 50 pounds oatmeal
• 25 pounds of masa harina de maize (corn flour for tortillas and tamales)Legumes
• 50 pounds of pinto beans
• 50 pounds of combined other beans, such as navy, kidney, etc.
• 20 pounds of split peas
• 20 pounds lentilsDairy
• 18 #10 cans dry milk or in     combination with boxes of store-bought dry milk
• 2 #10 cans cheese powder
• 5 #10 cans dehydrated eggs
• 3 #10 cans butter or margarineSugar
• 50 pounds white granulated sugar
• 10 pounds brown sugar
• 10 pounds powdered sugarShortening/Oil
• 10 3# cans shortening
• 5 48 fl. oz. bottles vegetable oil
• 2 16 fl. oz. bottles olive oil

Salt
• 10 pounds non-iodized table     salt (used in pickling & meat preservation as well as table use)

Fruits
• 52 pints peaches
• 52 pints apple sauce
• 52 pints fruit cocktail
• 52 quarts apples (includes pies, etc.)
• 52 pints pears
• 104 pints misc. fruits
• 1 #10 can raisins
• 1 #10 can dehydrated strawberries
• 2 #10 cans dehydrated apple slices
• 2 #10 cans dehydrated banana slices

Vegetables
• 104 pints of green beans
• 104 pints of sweet corn
• 104 pints of carrots
• 104 quarts of tomatoes
• 104 pints of tomato sauce
• 104 half pints tomato paste
• 104 quarts of potatoes and/or 22 pounds instant potatoes
• 26 quarts of squash or pumpkin
• 26 pints beets
• 2 #10 cans dehydrated sweet corn
• 4 #10 cans dehydrated peas
• 1 #10 can dehydrated onions
• 2 #10 cans dehydrated broccoli

Pasta
•15 pounds spaghetti
•6 pounds assorted noodles
•6 pounds lasagna

Meat
• 52 pints lean beef/venison roast
• 52 pints chicken/turkey
• 52 pints ham/fish/misc.
• 52 cans tuna
• 52 cans Spam
• 52 pints home canned hamburger for tacos, casseroles, etc.
• 1 #10 can ea. TVP (textured vegetable protein), bacon, chicken)

Seeds
A heavy selection of garden seeds to replenish your food supply, should the period of hard times last longer than a few months. Always opt for the worst and prepare ahead.
Most garden seeds last for years, if kept dry. One notable exception is     onion seed, which should be replaced yearly.

Miscellaneous
• 1 pound baking soda
• 3 pounds baking powder
• 1 pound dry yeast
• spices usually used
• 25 dozen canning jar lids, wide mouth & regular
• coffee, tea, powdered drink mixes in sufficient quantity
• A grain mill to grind grains
• An Amish or other “cooking with basics” cookbook or two
• 1 gallon inexpensive pancake syrup
• An assortment of “treats”, such as pickles, jams, preserves

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Disaster “triggering events”

Survival Manual/ Prepper articles/ Disaster “triggering events”)

trigger events1

A.  How to Spot the Triggers of a Socioeconomic Collapse
19 Sep 2011, SHTFplan.com, by Fernando Ferfal Aguirre (Surviving in Argentina)
Pasted from; http://www.shtfplan.com/emergency-preparedness/how-to-spot-the-triggers-of-a-socioeconomic-collapse_09192011

The following article has been graciously contributed by Fernando Ferfal Aguirre. Fernando lived through the hyper-inflationary meltdown in Argentina and shares his wisdom in his book, The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse, as well as regular updates at his web site, Surviving in Argentina .

Editor’s Note: With the many possibilities for natural and man-made events that can lead to local, regional, national or global crisis, it is often difficult to identify what is happening and what the consequences of certain events may be. As preppers we are always on the look-out for a potential disaster or emergency – it’s what we do. This is the nature of our chosen lifestyle. It is both a blessing and a curse. While most of us who prepare will likely be ready to deal with an emergency situation and minimize our panic while we respond to the crisis around us, our curse is that any event, no matter how insignificant or in the periphery it may be, raises our sensitivity levels, perhaps at times to extreme levels. There’s a lot of noise, confusion and misinformation out there, and sometimes it may lead to unnecessary stress.

In the article below Ferfal provides a little bit of relief for those of us who may look at every financial or economic occurrence as the potential trigger that devolves the entire system into meltdown and chaos. While we never know what will set the entire system ablaze, so our view is that it’s better to be overly sensitive than ignorant, Ferfal’s firsthand knowledge of a currency and societal meltdown on a national level gives us a critical view into what such an event may look like, the signs that will precede it, the sentiment and behavior of the people in the region, and what you can do to prepare. It’s not just about storing food and guns, but also being aware of our surroundings and the changes in society as the system around us becomes unhinged. With Ferfal’s help, we have another important piece of the puzzle. It’s an important piece, because in the event that the situation begins spiraling out of control, you’ll see it coming.

” Socioeconomic Collapse and Preparedness Timing by Fernando Ferfal Aguirre
Fernando, I really enjoyedyour book, (so have my parents, my wife, my friends and a dozen people in my office). It is very well written and packed with useful information. In fact, your book occupies a place in our law firm’s bookcase next to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Your book and your blog bring credibility to the debate over whether and how to prepare for a financial or other collapse.

One topic I have not seen covered deals with the timing of events. Most people I know who “prep” talk about “bugging out” and scenarios that rely on “triggering events.” Even in your case, you had a fairly short window of time during which time the currency collapsed. A currency collapse would definitely be a “triggering event” to almost everyone I know. In the last two years, however, I have come to believe we are in slow decline here in the U.S., and that there will not be a single “triggering event” that signals the time to start wearing my body armor (or whatever other example you want to use). The endpoint will be the same, but perhaps less dramatic than in Argentina. The problem is, there is a lot of danger and mayhem between now and what may be the final collapse of U.S. social order, perhaps even a generation. I am worried that in a slower, more orderly decline, it will be difficult to match my level of security with the level of threat. Many more people, even well prepared people, could be taken by surprise.

Most of the skills you recommend to your readers are good life skills that all people should have to enhance the chances of daily survival, even under normal circumstances. That said, constant, extreme vigilance is not any more practical than having Uncle Bob come over and help me guard my house 24/7 WTSHTF. While I am raising my children to be watchful and vigilant, there is a whole different level of vigilance I would apply if I lived during a triggering event like a currency collapse. For example, I let them play outside with their friends in the neighborhood without adult supervision. To disallow that would be unhealthy to their development, and the threat to their safety at the moment is not extreme. If the dollar were worthless and crime rampant as you have described in your book, there is no way I’d let them outside without an adult.

My question to you is this, assume I have taken all the advice in your book and acquired the skills, equipment and commodities to survive a pretty long time; what would be the top five or ten subtle changes in society, government, or markets that would cause you to go from a normal state of awareness to the “never let your kids out of the house to play in the back yard level of awareness?”
Thanks,
Andrew.

Fernando Ferfal Aguirre’s reply:
“An economic collapse in many ways is similar to the decline of an empire regarding how complex it is to prepare for it. Unlike defined disasters, natural ones like Katrina or man-made, there’s no clear beginning to it. It is a complex, multilevel event that in some aspects may have a clear trigger or milestone (such as defaulting or bank holidays) but on other aspects it may have been cooking slowly through inflation and unemployment for months, even years. Certain economic events may be easy to pinpoint, but how does unemployment affect people, when will this cause an increase in crime, or affect me directly leaving me without income? When will crime stop being only a factor related to the harsh economy and also be influenced in terms of how violent it becomes due to social hatred because of social polarization? Then there’s also the consideration that it may have been affecting people in different ways based on socioeconomic level and location in the country. Calling such a situation complex is an understatement.

Given such complexity and all the variables impossible to ponder, all you can do is stay informed, learn to tell the different signs and know how to interpret them so as to know what the future holds within a certain margin of error.

Things to look for would be unemployment, rumors from people within the banking and financial world (some of those rumors saved people millions when our economy collapsed) crime and what type of crime is taking place, corruption, debt and inflation. You must also become pretty skeptical regarding the information the main stream media provides. Who OWNS such media channels? Who are their sponsors and advertisers? What political agenda do they have or slightly tend to favor? If the media says the economy is doing wonderful but people on the street are barely getting by and you see more industries moving abroad, do have your doubts.

All these events and signs do tell you something. Don’t wait for the official SHTF day, in socioeconomic terms that simply will never happen, you will simply look back one day and realize the world around you has already changed. That is indeed how people will be taken by surprise. People sometimes talk about rule of law and no rule of law times, as if it were an on/off switch. One day everything is fine but the next week, ups! No ROL folks, so its madness out there, I’ll wear my MOLLE vest with armor plate to work and leave my Keltec 32 in the safe and pick my 1911 instead, carried in a drop leg holster or attached to my vest of course. People that think this way are the ones that will indeed fail at protecting their families today, ROL or no ROL. If you suffer a violent home invasion in an upper class neighborhood like the Petite family did, does it really matter if some nutcase declared that ROL is still in effect, or that it isn’t? Preparedness is now folks. Modern survival is the way you analyze events, make decisions and ultimately live your life from day one, not after an event. In states where its legal to carry, I would get my CCW permit and carry today. Doing so won’t bring any disadvantages to my lifestyle. My kids playing in the street with friends unsupervised? I´d be honest with myself. Can my son defend himself from a social predator? I wouldn’t leave a 10 year old kid unsupervised no matter where I live. How about 13 or 14 years old, and the general area you live in being pretty safe? Then I might be a bit more flexible.

What would be the top five or ten subtle changes in society, government, or markets that would cause you to go from a normal state of awareness to the “never let your kids out of the house to play in the back yard level of awareness?”

Unemployment: If unemployment is over 15-20% there will soon be serious social changes involving desperate people.

Poverty: Are half the people around you poor and looking your way with resentment? In Argentina the numbers are still pretty bad. 50% poor and 25% below the poverty line. Of the remaining 25% only 3% make enough money to life a life standard similar in quality to what middle class Americans are used to. Watch out for poverty and not only what the newspaper says or what the president announces. Do you see more people begging on the streets, more dumpster divers? How about shanty towns or tent towns? If you have any of those close keep an eye on your kids, your property and yourself.

Inflation: Right now Argentina ranks at the top 3 worst inflation in the planet. That’s a sign of bad times to come. We have unions forcing higher wages that chase after ever increasing prices and still losing millions keeping an artificial exchange rate with the dollar around 1 to 4,2. When the peso devaluates again, I wouldn’t be surprised to see it go to 7 or 8 pesos per dollar. Rising inflation is perhaps one of the final stages before the collapse, and something Americans should pay special attention to.

Businesses and Infrastructure: Are roads being repaired, parks kept tended to? Do you see a general sense of decay in the overall infrastructure? Neighbors keeping their houses well kept are a sign of good times. When the economy collapsed here in 2001 middle class people wouldn’t even buy a can of paint let alone remodel, and it showed. Things like stores closing and going out of business, shops boarded up, sometimes being replaced with cheapo discount stores.

Crime and Rumors: Crime will be a clear indication of you having to go from yellow to orange in terms of awareness. Now, it may not appear on the media as much as it should and negative news may be avoided entirely by news groups trying to be “team players” with the government. You on the other hand cannot afford the pink shaded glasses. Pay special attention to the local gossip and rumors, and when something catches your attention try verifying through other sources. Who got mugged, robbed or suffered a home invasion. Don’t wait too long. Once you know this is happening in your general area take the extra precautions you know you must take.
You can still have a pretty normal and happy life in spite of being forced to be more cautions and more aware given the circumstances. I believe its much better to take those measures while still enjoying the things I can, than taking the easy road and not doing it, and maybe one day regret it.”

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B.  Here is my List of Triggering Events – What’s Yours?
29 Jun 2012, learnto prepare.com, by Denis Korn
Excerpts from: http://learntoprepare.com/2012/06/here-is-my-list-of-triggering-events-whats-yours/

trigger events2 These times require being alert and awake! “The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance.” ~ John Curran

In January of this year I posted the article below. Here is the segment of that article I want to focus upon in this post:
As you reflect on the scenarios that you presume might – or might not – occur, think about the concept of a “triggering event.” Ask yourself, “What are the triggering events that will motivate me to immediate action?” “What triggering event will launch the imminent arrival of the scenario I have presumed might occur or thought wouldn’t occur?”
If you have created a list of triggering events, you will be on the look out for possible immediate action.

It is time to be specific! Whether an emergency can be short term and have only a minimal disruption in your daily routine, or catastrophic requiring a significant change in life style, apathy and ignorance will not be bliss. While I’m not a prophet or psychic, I do have the discernment skills to realize that we live in very precarious and uncertain times. Between acts of God or geophysical events and man-made devastating incidents, there are so many potential scenarios that could come to pass, that being continually vigilant is essential.

Based on the potential scenarios listed at the bottom of this post, here are some of my specific triggering events:

  • Declaration of an imminent weather event
  • A pattern of major and/or catastrophic weather events
  • Significant indication of, or actual occurrence of, a major physical event or multiple events
  • Prolonged drought leading to possible food shortages
  • Potential loss of job, income or bank accounts due to government or corporate actions
  • Serious personal illness
  • Substantial instability in national and global financial markets
  • The elimination of the dollar as the world’s reserve currency
  • Bank holiday’s
  • An indication of a major financial restructuring
  • Economic collapse
  • Shortages of critical foods, medications and provisions
  • Curious and strange activity of government officials, corporate executives and the very wealthy
  • Social unrest and civil disobedience leading to severe government and police action
  • Martial law being declared
  • The suspension of the 1st and/or 2nd amendments – freedom of speech, religion, assembly, etc. and the right to bear arms
  •  Strict control over the internettrigger events3
  • Major cyber attack
  • Suspension of elections
  • Terrorist attack, act of war or preparation for war
  • Disruption of oil supplies
  • National medical or biological emergency – real or contrived
  • Activation of emergency presidential powers that will control everyone’s normal activities
  • An extraordinary governmental or media deception
  • Severe solar activity that could lead to CME’s (Coronal Mass Ejection) and major disruption of the electrical and communication grid
  • A profound and extraordinary religious, spiritual or cosmological event
  • Signs of an imminent pole shift or major geophysical event
  • An announcement by the government – widespread or to a confidential group – to relocate, leave coastal areas and to seek secure surroundings

You don’t have to believe in catastrophic events to be prepared. Being prepared for the unexpected is simply a good idea. Whatever your perspective, being aware of world events during these critical times and the their potential effect upon you and your family and friends is the responsible attitude to embrace.

Many folks are reluctant to plan ahead, or they assume that the government or others will take care of them, or they are just too busy, or they just don’t think it is necessary. As an option to doing nothing or to enhance some other method of emergency preparedness planning you have chosen, consider the following. As you reflect on the scenarios that you presume might – or might not – occur, think about the concept of a “triggering event.” Ask yourself, “What are the triggering events that will motivate me to immediate action?” “What triggering event will launch the imminent arrival of the scenario I have presumed might occur or thought wouldn’t occur?” If you have created a list of triggering events, you will be on the look out for possible immediate action. This is especially important if you have considered scenarios that will have a long term impact on the supply of goods and services that are required to sustain your basic needs.

If there are items that are essential to your well-being such as medical products, devices, children’s products, or special nutritional foods, then being alert to a potential disruption of vital needs is crucial. While it is always desirable to plan ahead and have provisions in place, it is better to react at the last minute than not at all. Know exactly what you need, how much will be adequate, where you have to go to supply your needs, how you will get there, and how you will pay for your supplies. Obviously some scenarios may offer some prior indications, such as hurricanes, storms, or economic/political issues; while others can occur without warning. You are responsible – you must choose to act or not – unfortunately non action can have severe consequences for yourself and your family!

If you have been hesitant to act or even reflect about preparedness planning you are encouraged to seriously consider this post.

Scenarios

Acts of God Man Made Earth Changes
Local – Regional National National/Worldwide
Earthquake Government regulation/control Catastrophic Weather
Flood Martial Law Asteroid/Comet
Fire Food Shortages Pole Shift
Hurricane Societal Breakdown Solar Flare – CME
Storm/Ice/Snow Civil Disobedience/Riots Tribulation/Religious
Tornado Medical Emergency Severe Earth Changes
Drought Economic Emergency/Collapse
Power Outage Major Accident
Mud Slide Terrorism Attack
Tsunami Biological/Chemical/Radiological   Attack
EMP – Electrical Magnetic Pulse Attack
PERSONAL ISSUES Bombing
Job Loss War
Illness Cyber Attack – No internet
Emergencies
Financial Loss

 Time Frames:

3 Days to 2 Weeks
Minor to moderate inconvenience and disruption of the daily routine.
Basic supplies in the first 3 days would be valuable for comfort but not essential.
An adequate amount of basic supplies after 3 days are important.

3 Weeks to 2 Months
The inconvenience is very noticeable and the routine disruption can be significant.
Supplies required are usually on hand, and stockpiling some supplies will be very important.

3 Months to 6 Months
Preparedness planning is very important and a serious disruption to the daily routine is inevitable. Mobility and location to wait out the emergency is important in your planning.
Proper supplies will be critical.
Medical and other special needs must be planned for in advance.

6 Months to 1 Year
Unless you are very prepared and are committed to self-reliance, in this time frame your lifestyle will definitely be impacted.
Serious attention to your preparedness planning is required.
Action and provisions are essential.
You will be dealing with serious issues during this time period, and you must be prepared.

1 Year or More
Scenarios actualized in this time frame are this most serious and catastrophic, and will require a serious commitment to lifestyle changes.
You will be dealing with national and worldwide calamity.
The extent of the impact on everyone’s life cannot be over emphasized.
Significant and detailed planning is required, and even with this an emergency situation of this duration will be wrought with uncertainty.
This will be a time for community togetherness, sharing, and mutual support.
Skills not normally possessed by folks will be required.
Gardening and other self-reliant skills will be essential.
Books, tools, and other valuable resources will be vital.

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37 Non foods & 37 foods to have in emergency storage

RainMan(Survival Manual/ Prepper articles/  37 Non food and 37 food items to have in emergency storage)


A.  37 non-food grocery items to hoard before crisis
June 2012, HappyPreppers.com,
Pasted from: http://www.happypreppers.com/37-non-food-items-to-hoard.html

If you’ve read our free guide on the 37 Foods to Hoard Before Crisis, then you’ll want to take a peek at the 37 things to hoard that aren’t food that you can find at the grocery stores. You’ll be happy that you planned ahead by stocking these supplies for survival and comfort. This list does not include first aid items (unless they have multiple uses), fishing or hunting equipment, camping equipment or security and shelter items. These are everyday items that have a
multitude of uses.

Print this list and head to store now, before disaster strikes.

37 Thing to Hoard that aren’t food:

  1. Aspirin or pain reliever. Aspirin is a pain reliever that’s also useful when directly applied to relieve a bee sting. Aspirin also protects your heart by keeping your blood flowing freely. Aspirin is not appropriate for everyone, so be sure to talk to your doctor before you begin an aspirin regimen.
  2. Baking soda. Technically this is a food, but find out the preppers uses for baking soda beyond baking. Here are some unusual uses for baking soda.
  3. Bleach. The bleach a prepper stores is not for washing clothes. It’s for helping you to purify your water. Have many different ways to secure clean drinking water. Happy Preppers take a few precautions to sanitize food containers with bleach,
  4. Borax. Sure Borax deodorizes and freshens, but it’s also quite a handy thing to have in post apocalyptic times. Learn the many prepper uses of Borax.
  5. Bounce laundry sheets. Don’t waste bounce sheets in the dryer, save them to repel insects, which will be important when you butcher your game or eat or prepare foods outside! The other brands simply don’t work.
  6. Buckets. You’ll need a food-grade bucket to collect water and another bucket to collect grey water for your other uses.
  7. Can openers + Lid Openers (extras). You’ll have a difficult time opening buckets and cans without the proper tools. They break, so have backups!
  8. Cat litter. Mind you, the suggestion of cat litter is not for your cat. This certainly will come in handy to deal with human waste.
  9. Charcoal + lighter fluid. You’ll need a variety of ways to cook your food and charcoal is quite handy, though it’s not a long term solution. Even if you don’t have a fire pit or charcoal grill, you’ll want charcoal as you can dig a fire pit.
  10. Commercial Firewood. Wood needs time to age, your stash might get wet. Adding a few logs of commercial firewood to your prepping list will ease your mind a bit about warmth in the coldest months.
  11. Cotton balls. For application of ointments and creams, cotton balls are essential first aid supply. Do not use cotton swab sticks in the ear canal as it could cause injury. To remove ear wax, apply hydrogen peroxide drops into the ear to flush the wax. Create a fire starter with cotton balls coated in petroleum jelly.
  12. Dishpans. Ideally you’ll need three dishpans for your off the grid kitchen: one to scrap off the food particles, the next to wash the dishes clean, and finally a chlorine bleach and water rinse. Two is fine. See the collapsible dish washing basin for camping, right.
  13. Duct tape + Super Glue. A prepper will find infinite uses for duct tape in crisis from hemming clothing or patching up gear to medical uses and
  14. Dish washing soap (liquid) + dish washing gloves. Prepare for an off the grid cooking scenario by stocking up on dish washing soap for cutting boards, dishes (when you run out of the paper ones), utensils and pots and pans. Just, don’t scrub your cast iron pans with liquid soap or you’ll provide an unsavory soapy seasoning to your food. Dawn contains a biodegradable surfactants, and contains no phosphate, making it an ideal choice. It’s not for vanity’s sake that you will need dish washing gloves. In doing the dishes you may cut yourself! Minimize the risk, so you won’t get an infection.
  15. Facial tissues. You won’t want to rough it out on your nose during a cold or flu. Facial tissues will provide comfort in uncertain times.
  16. Fever reducer. Ask your doctor what fever reducer is appropriate for you. Children’s Advil suspension is a fever reducer and pain reliever contains ibuprofen to temporarily reduce fevers, relieve minor aches and pains due to the common cold, flu, sore throat or headaches and toothaches; however ibuprofen may cause a sever allergic reaction, especially in people allergic to aspirin.
  17. Freezer bags. Not that you’ll be freezing in an off the grid scenario, but freezer bags will help you preserve what food you have and collect food and water.
  18. Funnel. You’ll need a funnel for a myriad of uses.
  19. Garbage bags. You’ll be using garbage bags more often in uncertain times, including sanitation of human wastes and even for use in burying the dead in addition to collecting waste. Costco and Home Depot carry large garbage bags in bulk by the rolls and at very reasonable prices.
  20. Hand sanitizers. You won’t want to use water to wash hands in times of drought. Stocking up on hand sanitizers will help you through pandemics, and for cleaning hands after meat handling. Handy indeed.
  21. Hydrogen peroxide. You likely have hydrogen peroxide in your first aid kit to help you fight infections, but hydrogen Peroxide has so many applications from water purification to cleaning kitchen tools. See the many prepper uses for hydrogen peroxide.
  22. Lip balm, lotions and creams. Skin hydration will be key, particularly when water is at a premium. Don’t overlook these inexpensive finds at the dollar stores, including Blistex and Chapstick lip balms, cocoa butter creams.
  23. Lysol. You’ll appreciate keeping cold and virus flus at bay with Lysol. It’s also effective in combating lice, which may spread rapidly in uncertain times.
  24. Matches. Matches are easy enough to procure at the market. Stash them in a mason jar with a sandpaper striking lid to keep them dry and ready for use. You should also invest in amagnesium fire starter.
  25. Nail polish. Nail polish is another unusual prepper item, and not for vanity’s sake! Sure you can fix a cracked finger nail, but you’ll find loads clever uses for nail polish. Clear nail polish will help you smudge-proof your canning labels or the labels of your garden plants: just layer a coat on top of the important words. Thread a needle by coating the end of the thread with polish before going through the eye. Stop a window crack from
    getting worse by applying a dab of nail polish (we suggest using clear, but any nail polish will do)! Colored nail polish can help you color code keys or help you identify uses for buckets, mark levels for how much water you need, or mark funnels for use in food or gasoline. You’ll find an endless amount of uses, including keeping shoe laces from unravelling, tightening screws (coat the thread groves), plugging a cooler, or mending holes in window screens. It’s just another clever item for your fix-it box! Never mind what others may say.
  26. Paper cups, paper plates and paper bowls. For your hot beverages (coffee, tea, cocoa), using paper cups will save on the precious resource of water and is far more healthy than drinking from Styrofoam. You’ll likely need more paper bowls than you think as they are ideal for soups, cereals and chili, as well as freeze dried pasta and rice dishes. Get a few sizes of paper plates to accommodate your meal size.
  27. Paper towels. If you’re short on space, consider Shop towels. These strong, absorbent towels are great for wiping hands and cleaning up grease, oil, grime, and fluids. You’ll need fewer than ordinary paper towels, so it will take up less space.
  28. Plastic cups. Plastic cups will hold up better than paper cups. Mark plastic cups with a Sharpie to ensure water glasses are used to their full potential.
  29. Plastic utensils. Save your water in using disposable utensils.
  30. Paracord. An essential for your bugout bag, paracord will also provide entertainment. What will you craft from paracord?
  31. Petroleum jelly. Vasoline or the generic equivalent is an ideal fuel when combined with cotton balls as a fire starter. Petroleum jelly helps protect minor cuts, scrapes, and burns, and also protects skin from wind burn and chapping. Use petroleum jelly as a lip balm! To help heal chapped hands, load a generous portion on hands, then cover hands in plastic bags to keep them moistened for 20-minutes.
  32. Shampoo and soap. In an off the grid scenario, there won’t be much bathing, but you’ll be glad you stocked up on shampoo and soaps for an economic collapse where your money is better spent acquiring fresh meats, produce or other essentials.
  33. Steel Wool. Did you know that steel wool is an excellent fire starter? All you need is a 9-volt battery. Here’s the Doomsday Preppers tutorial how to make fire from steel wool.
  34. Toilet paper. Just for fun, read what people did before toilet paper.
  35. Toothbrushes. Buy one toothbrush per month for each member of your family. Stock up on toothbrushes at dollar stores.
  36. Toothpaste. You may want to reconsider your toothpaste if it has fluoride in it. Learn why you should buy fluoride free toothpaste.
  37. Writing instruments. Pens, pencils and paper will be a luxury item for a world that’s off the grid. Remember also to get a manual pencil sharpener. If you home school, you may also consider getting chalk and a chalk board.
  • TIP: A Sharpie pen will help you label food expiration dates on cans and shelf stable items. Additionally, it will help identify assigned cups and plates.

In case you think we forgot about water, read on. We recommend distilled water, though any bottled water will sustain you. Read about it in 37 Foods to Hoard Before There is a Crisis. This is not an eBook, but it is free information to the public.

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B.  37 Foods to Hoard
Essential foods to stock in your Prepper’s pantry
June 2012, HappyPreppers.com,

http://www.happypreppers.com/37-food-storage.html


The more people who prep, the safer we all are. That’s why happy Preppers wants to encourage you to stock the 37 most important goods you can buy from the grocery store.
Wondering what are the 37 foods to hoard? Every day food storage is an important topic.
Before there is a crisis, it’s good to make a list of important food items that you can buy while they are still available. At HappyPreppers.com, we believe the happiest people on the planet will be the ones who’ve prepared should the unthinkable occur.

Preppers list of foods
Happy Preppers are now purchasing these 37 essential food items from the grocery stores for
their everyday food storage while they are still available:

  1. Distilled water: Grab any water you can, but distilled water is the most pure form of water. Get water now and make plans to get more water. Learn how to purify water and learn more about how to get water in our water guide. Consider adding canned seltzer water to your Prepper storage. Seltzer water adds a little pep to your water supply, and it can help relieve constipation. Avoid seltzer however if family members have acid reflux. (We know water isn’t a food to hoard, but you can’t live without it.)
  2. Canned liquids. It’s important to stock up on canned foods with high liquid content. Two excellent examples are canned pineapple juice and vegetable juice available on the bottom shelves of your grocery store. These foods will provide nutrition and hydration simultaneously. Look also for evaporated milk, condensed milk, and canned coconut milk. Coconut milk will help you cook rice faster! Stewed tomatoes, and vegetable, beef or chicken stock can also help you cook rice without depleting your drinking water. It’s also a great excuse to stock up on canned beer, which you can use to cook! Canned
    vegetable broth is extremely hard to find at your grocery store, but available right on Amazon.
  3. Dehydrated (powdered) milk. Bob’s Red Mill can last up to two years, and is an excellent natural creamer for coffee: try sprinkling in a tablespoon or two in your coffee and skip the non-dairy creamers made of hydrogenated oils. Like goats milk? Stock up on canned or dehydrated milk to give you around 2,500 calories per gallon.
  4. Hard cheeses encased in wax. Waxed hard cheeses are not so easy to find, but they are available, and when you find Parmesan, swiss, sharp cheddar or Gouda encased in wax, it’s a very “Gouda” thing! You see, the wax prevents cheese from growing mold and bacteria, and it also keeps moisture in your cheese, so it can store for a very long time without refrigeration. Parmesan is a hard cheese, and in the powder form has a four month expiration date, but encased in wax it can last up to 25 years! Consider buying cheese wax and even a basic hard cheese kit to make your own delicious cheeses. Wax will keep hard cheeses moist during the aging process, and also prevent unwanted mold growth on your aging cheeses. Here’s more about prepper cheese.
  5. Whey Powder or protein concentrate. You know that Little Miss Muffet ate her curds and whey, and so should you. In cheese making, curds are the thick part of the milk that’s separated from the liquid when the milk turns sour. Whey is the watery part that’s cloudy and yellowish. Whey is highly nutritious! Bob’s Red Mill offers an all natural whey protein concentrate. Whey contains a high quality complete protein containing all of the essential amino acids required by the body for strength and muscle development. It is a great way of increasing protein intake without adding excessive carbohydrates and fat. It dissolves instantly so it ‘s great for making high protein shakes and smoothies. In survival times, mix it with dehydrated milk for an extra frothy and satisfying nutrient! So while this isn’t the first thing that will fly off the shelves in the event of a crisis, it’s one Happy Preppers should have on their list.
  6. Canned & dehydrated meats. Go for the jerky! Tune-in to the tuna. Stack up on the Dak! Meats provide humans with around 90% of what we need to survive. When you realize that 90% of plants are deadly to humans, you’ll understand humans need to eat meat. When possible, look for grass-fed meats. Know that smoked salmon as well as sausages and hot dogs can last a long time in your refrigerator, but then should be among the first things to consume in a power failure. Store organic hot dogs and sausages, such as Applegate Farms Uncured Beef Hot Dogs which are made from organic, grass-fed beef. Always cut hot dogs (cut them lengthwise into small pieces and remove the casing) before giving them to children younger than 4 as they are a top
    choking hazard. Avoid “mechanically separated meat,” which is a product produced by forcing bones with meat under pressure into an edible paste. It sounds about as appetizing as it is good for you. Don’t buy them! See our complete list of canned meats (because variety is the spice of life).
  7. Tea, coffee and bouillon. Tea, coffee and bouillon will help your water taste better. Consider that tea has been around for 5,000+ years for a reason! Water quality of our ancestors wasn’t very good, so tea helped it taste better. Tea can help hydrate quickly when you can’t wait for the boiled water to cool. Decaffeinated teas can provide a burst of additional energy; while other teas can provide a calming and soothing effect. Additionally, many kinds of tea have anti-cancer properties (polyphenols), and reduce the risk of blood clotting and even lowers cholesterol levels. Consider adding echinacea,
    peppermint and chamomile teas to help combat the common cold, naturally, too! Finally, teas have a social importance in many cultures. In the Wild West, it was coffee that was more important than tea as a staple. Certainly coffee is a stimulant, but it’s also a diuretic, which means you’ll urinate more than without it. According to Web MD, drinking coffee means you’ll be “less likely to have type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, and dementia.” bouillon is an essential flavoring to water. Bouillon cubes are compressed stock that you must dissolve in water. This salty essential will help you flavor soups,
    rices, ramen style noodles and gravies. Bouillon cubes are compressed stock that you must dissolve in water. This salty essential will help you flavor soups, rices, ramen style noodles and gravies. Even if you don’t use any of these in your regular diet, consider securing them for your Prepper’s pantry for bartering!
  8. Oils. You can’t cook much without oil, so buy your favorites in small containers and look for the word “virgin” which means that they are the first press and have the most nutritive value. Buy cooking oils in small cans, which will keep them protected from light. Olive oil is an ideal oil, but can quickly go rancid, thought it may have a shelf life up to two years. Shortening usually has trans fats, so consider coconut oil as cooking lard to replace Crisco or other vegetable shortening, which is made of dangerous trans fats. Coconut oil is very heat stable, and because it’s low to oxidize, it means that it
    won’t go rancid as quickly as other oils. It can last up to two years, and it provides fast energy. Also consider Ghee or organic shortening! With regards to other kinds of oils you store in your Prepper’s pantry, if possible, look for a NON-GMO corn oil, as 86% of corn has been genetically modified. Whatever oil you buy, be sure to buy them in small containers as the minute you open, they oxidate and begin deteriorating quickly. Avoid anything made with Soybean oil as 90% of soybean products are genetically modified or cross-contaminated. Other oils to watch carefully include corn oil and canola oil, as they are high risk crops.
  9. Whole wheat flour. Wheat is a basic food product that’s chock full of fiber, protein, vitamins and even minerals, like selenium. Thankfully, “There is not currently, nor has there ever been, any genetically engineered wheat on the market,” according to the Non-GMO project, so stock up! Even if you stock white flour in your daily pantry, be sure to stock wheat flour in your Prepper’s pantry because it has more nutritive value when it has the whole grain (bran, germ and endosperm). White flour has only the endosperm. You may also need flour for thickening gravies, or coat and fry, such things as freshly caught fish. If you have whole wheat flour, you won’t have to stock genetically modified corn starch, which is also used for thickening. Consider Bob’s Red
    Mill Whole Wheat flour because it comes wrapped in plastic, rather than a paper bag which is more susceptible to pest invasions. Ultimately, you should store whole wheat flour in your every day pantry. Your long term pantry should include whole grain wheat and you should have a grain mill.Read more about grains.
  10. Wheat germ and Shredded Wheat. Wheat germ is the center of the seed. Packed with protein and fiber, wheat germ also has folate, magnesium, zinc, manganese, selenium and vitamin E. It’s considered “nutrition in a crunch.” It’s not really a meal, but one you can add to your hot cereal. The first edition of the Boy Scout Manual in 1911 highlights the best food for Boy Scouts is Shredded Wheat, “because it has all the muscle-building material in the whole wheat grain prepared in a digestible form, supplying all the strength needed for work or play.”
  11. Potato flour. Consider adding potato flour to your Prepper’s Pantry. Potato flour is wonderful, gluten-free addition to your Prepper’s Pantry to make breads, pancakes and waffles, and potato soups. It’s also wonderful as a thickening agent, so you can avoid GMO cornstarch. Don’t confuse it with potato starch, because potato flour is the entire potato (skin and all) dehydrated. Potatoes are safe according to the NON-GMO project.
  12. Masa Harina. Spanish for “dough,” masa is the flour of finely ground maize, hominy or corn. It’s basically been dried, cooked, ground, soaked in lime and then dried again. It reconstitutes easily with warm water and salt to make corn tortillas. You can also use Masa harina to make the dough for empanadas, papusas and tamales. Look for organic brands, which will ensure you’re not getting a dangerous genetically modified food products. In the stores, look for the “Non-GMO project verified” label to ensure that the corn you buy does not have genetically modified corn in it.
  13. Corn Grits. While Masa Harina is a finely ground meal, corn grits is more versatile, hearty and nutritious basic food. Nothing satisfies like the savory experience of Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free corn grits (also called polenta). For breakfast, you will love it with milk and honey. Grits left in a pot to cool become polenta. In this way, you can serve it for dinner with butter, cheese, marinara or gravy. Again, make sure you steer clear of GMO corn products by purchasing organic (shockingly, 86% of the world’s corn is GMO).
    You can also purchase alkali-treated corn (actually dried maize kernels) known as hominy, which is largely popular in Southern and Mexican cuisine. Popular in the South, you can also find this product out West if you look for it in cans in the Mexican food isles. Hominy is high in calcium content.
  14. Oatmeal. A favorite of American pioneers, oatmeal is a food low in saturated fat, and it’s also a good source of fiber, which is especially important during survival times. Look for John McCann’s steel cut oatmeal in a can, which are 100% whole grain and natural Irish oats. You’ll need to store adequate water as making porridge requires 4 cups of water for every one cup of oatmeal. Best of all, it can last for several years. A tip for preparing is to soak the oatmeal over night, so that it takes just 9-12 minutes to boil (instead of a half an hour).
  15. Bread crumbs and stuffing. Bread crumbs are a satisfying addition to casseroles, and can also help you make salmon and crab cakes with the cans in your Prepper’s food storage. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to find Bread crumbs sealed in plastic for freshness. Usually, they are boxed in waxed paper. Stuffing is a natural accompaniment to your mashed potatoes and will mix nicely with spices and dehydrated onions.
  16. Pumpernickel. Learn to like Pumpernickel and make it part of your everyday diet! This amazing whole grain rye bread (enjoyed by Germans and Scandinavians with cheeses, pates and meats), packs a mighty punch of fiber and has a three or four month shelf life! You can make a satisfying meal with even one slice of bread. In the beginning of a food crises situation, you will find yourself feeling full from this nutritious bread. So pack some pate and store Pumpernickel regularly. (You’ll feel regular too.)
  17. Crackers. While crackers have little nutritive value, they do provide a sense of normalcy to a survival situation and will be a worthy an satisfying accompaniment to soups and tuna salad, and peanut butter stashes in the Prepper’s Pantry. You may find some surprising nutritive benefits such as niacin and iron in flaky flavorful crackers. In your long term food storage you’ll need to buy some pilot crackers in a #10 can.
  18. Potato Flakes and au gratin potatoes. If you can find a shelf-stable variety of au gratin or scalloped potatoes that don’t have hydrogenated oils, then go for it. Unfortunately, most au gratin potatoes have them (so skip Wegmann’s, Betty Crocker and Idahoan until they stop including hydrogenated oils in their manufacture). Look for au gratin potatoes at organic based food market, like Whole Foods.
  19. Rice. Sure jasmine rice is cheap food, and worth storing but you can also store a variety of rice to keep your family interested. Try batsmati rice, Italian arborio rice, short grain Asian rice, wild rice, and brown rice too! Brown rice is a healthy option, but requires more cooking time, which could deplete your cooking resources. Consider instant rice for this reason alone, though it’s not as healthy as other rice options.
  20. Pastas. Dried pasta has little to no fat or moisture content, so it resists spoilage. Among the most filling and inexpensive foods, store a variety of pastas in addition to your spaghetti and macaroni noodles including: egg noodles, gnocchi (made with potatoes), dried tortellini (filled with hard cheese), orzo (rice shaped pasta), couscous (wheat-based pasta) and the other variety of shaped Italian pasta such as lasagna, linguine, rotelle, rotini, rigatoni, orecchiette, penne, mastoccilli etc. Remember Asian pastas too! There are healthier options to the inexpensive ramen style noodles. Try soba (made from buckwheat), rice noodles, udon (what flour), bean curd noodles, and chow main noodles (fried noodles made of egg and wheat).
  21. Raisins and dried fruits. Just a handful of raisins will provide a full serving of fruit. Raisins have protein, fiber, iron, and Vitamin C. Raisins are loaded with antioxidants and potassium, too. Use them in your Prepper’s pantry to enhance the flavor of rice for dinner and cereals for breakfasts. Remember, raisins are a dried fruit and not a dehydrated food. There is a difference in how you store each. Organic raisins are the best choice so you can avoid toxic pesticides of commercial farming. Newmans Own is an excellent choice. These raisins are packed with juicy flavor and a pleasing texture, and are available by the six pack in 15-oz cans for your prepper’s pantry and delivered to your door. Enhance your supply with dried apricots, dates, cranberries, mangos and whatever your family enjoys.
  22. Fruit strips. Skip the fruit rollups, which are ladened with unwanted high-fructose corn syrups. Instead, look for Simply Fruit twists and high fiber dried fruit strips available in a variety of flavors, such as cherry, grape, and apricot. The more variety, the better for your family to fight boredom in diet and to get the essential nutrients they each provide.
  23. Canned fruits. Most people stock up on canned veggies, but really it’s the fruit they should concentrate on because fruits contain twice as much calories per pound as veggies. A fruit cocktail will give you about 300-400 calories per pound. Peaches, packed in light syrup offer a tremendous calorie boost to the survival diet. The liquids also provide a valuable source of hydration, so don’t can the juice in the cans! Look for citrus varieties, such as pineapple and mandarin oranges, to give the essential vitamin C. Applesauce too can be a wonderful accompaniment to cereals, and can also serve as a dessert. Canned pumpkin puree will also provide a heavy dose of Vitamin A and you can make a simple soup by adding bouillon and spices, such as garlic.
  24. Canned veggies. Think beyond green beans! Unfortunately, green beans do not pack many calories. If you’re looking for the ideal veggies to stash, then think about canned root vegetables, like sweet potatoes and yams. Sweet potatoes are high in Vitamin A, plus they’re filling. Add a variety with canned sauerkraut, cabbage and beets, too. If you eat them, carrots, peas and potatoes provide the fixing for a nice stew. Canned olives, asparagus and artichoke hearts will help you make easy pasta dishes. Dried veggies, right are availabe online. Skip the canned corn (it’s likely GMO).
  25. Beans and legumes. Stock up on beans — all kinds of dried beans and canned beans, (including refried beans). The more variety of beans you store, the better as it provides energy and fiber. Beans pack around 1250 calories per pound. Best of all, you can sprout beans — it as little as five days you can sprout crunchy, fresh phytonutrients for your family from dried beans, peas, and lentils. (See the sprouter, left.) Peanuts aren’t really nuts (they’re beans, but stock up on those too because they add protein).
  26. Nuts, seeds and nut-butters. While it’s true that nuts can go rancid quickly, nuts are an excellent source of energy, so stock up on them in your Prepper’s pantry (provided there are no allergies in your family)! Raw almonds, walnuts and cashews are excellent choices, pistachio’s too. Mixed roasted nuts will also provide varieties, such as hazelnuts, pecans and Brazil nuts. Nuts are obviously allergens, so avoid giving them to children under 5. Think also canned chestnuts, which are a great source of fiber and found in the Asian section of your supermarket. (They’re also an excellent source of
    potassium, magnesium, iron and vitamin C.) The healthiest nuts and seeds are in bags, rather than oil filled cans and jars. Think sunflower seeds and alfalfa seeds too! Yes, you already knew to stock peanut butter, but did you know that peanut butter is really a bean butter? Look for peanut butters that are simply peanuts, oil and salt (yes, the kind with oils at the top, which are the natural peanut butters). Skip the peanut butters that have sugars in them or worse yet, those with hydrogenated oils in them. Know that “trans fat free” doesn’t mean that they are free from trans fats, it could mean that there
    is less than .05 grams of trans fat per serving.
  27. Honey. Even if you don’t use honey, buy some honey, honey! Not only will honey last forever, but you’ll use honey in survival times to flavor boring oatmeals and other breakfast grains, as well as teas. Honey eases sore throats, and more importantly, if you don’t have any topical antibiotics, you can use honey as a paste to put on wounds. When you learn how to bake breads, you’ll realize that many recipes call for honey. So, honey, what are you waiting for?
  28. Iodized salt. Look to history and you’ll find salt was an important commodity. Salt can kill bacteria! Salt contains chloride and sodium ions, and all living things need these components in small quantities. Not all salt is the same! Humans need iodized salt to avoid thyroid gland problems and goiter and to help regulate fluid balance in the body, but more importantly we need salt to preserve food. How does salt help preserve food?
    Salt inhibits growth of germs in a process of osmosis where the salt pushes water out of the microbial cells. Best of all, salt lasts for ever. You can salt everything from salad greens the way the Roman’s did to curing meats and preserving other kinds food. Indeed, salt is very useful to Preppers.
  29. Sugars. You’ll need granulated sugar, brown sugar and powdered sugar. We also suggest buying sugar in the raw. Skip the beet and go for the cane, baby! Skip also the sugars that you can buy in boxes and paper bags. Buy your sugars wrapped in plastic, because this helps protect it from insects. As a second step you can buy sugars in cans or place your own sugar purchase into mylar bags and sealed food-grade plastic buckets sealed with a gamma lid. Look also for sugar in the raw packets. One final note of caution with spices: if you regularly eat curry or other spicy foods then it’s fine to include them in your Prepper’s diet; however, you may well find yourself with a “ring of fire” otherwise. We therefore suggest you cautiously pack
  30. Spices. In addition to salt and pepper, get whatever spices your family enjoys. Yes, spices are expensive, but saffron will sure make that boring old rice more tasty, and chili can help you add flavor to all those beans you’re storing. You may want to skip the strong spices curry. While it tastes wonderful, they may also attract human predators.
    Survival spices to consider might include Think about buying extra spices of what’s already in your cupboard, for example dill, red pepper, cumin, rosemary, oregano, dried mustard, and ginger for example. Garlic is packed with antioxidants. Cream of tartar will help you whip egg whites. spices.
  31. Condiments. Buy small cans of mayonnaise for your tuna salad on crackers (because once you open the mayo, it will quickly go bad). If possible look for a mayo that’s not made with from deadly soybeans (90% of which are GMO). A variety of mustards can also help spice up your foods. Buy ketchup without deadly high-fructose corn syrup, and keep it in a brown paper bag and store in a dark place so that it will preserve as long as possible. Tabasco sauce, too can help add flavor to otherwise bland foods. Think also of canned gravy as a condiment! Gravies will surely add some flavoring to your potatoes
    and stuffing. Look for NON-GMO soy sauce for all that rice. Stock vinegars (balsamic, cider and rice whine). Think also in terms of Worcestershire sauce, barbecue sauce and to enhance your stews and soups and to help you make gravies. And on the sweet side, consider stocking maple syrup, vanilla and almond extracts, plus cocoa powder and chocolate syrups.
  32. Chocolates. Not only does chocolate pack loads of antioxidants, but it’s a morale booster that could prove essential. What’s more the fiber will fill you up. Pack high quality dark chocolate, like Dove bars, in your Prepper’s Pantry. If you look closely at the ingredients, of other chocolates, like Hershey’s Kisses, you’ll find an unwanted ingredient: hydrogenated oils. Those do not belong in your chocolate, even during survival times! Besides, chocolate has been known to boost heart health. According to Livestrong.com, chocolates may help fight urinary tract infections. So be sure to keep chocolates in your every day food storage. You can add chocolate chips to pancakes, muffins, breads, and more to delight kids and help keep the normalcy as best you can
    in a disaster situation.
  33. Vitamins. Keeping at peek vitality is crucial during episodes of stress. While multi- vitamins are a great idea, be sure to pack a Calcium with Vitamin D fortified vitamin, as this combination may help your body fight infections. Also, look for magnesium; As an essential stress supplement, magnesium prevents the damage caused by excess adrenaline.
  34. Food bars. Ideal for a bug out bag, food bars are compact nutrition and should be part of your everyday food storage. Sure, some food bars are a sort of cross between chocolate candy bars and vitamins, others more of a granola, but they are often high in protein. Food bars can provide a satisfaction for a morning meal or an addition to your other rations. Look for coconut bars too! Another food bar that often goes under the radar with Prepper’s (but shouldn’t) is Pemmican, pictured left, which contains complete protein and gives energy. Free of isolates, fructose, sugar and cholesterol, Pemmican is
    a concentrated food bar that offers quick energy.
  35. Vodka. You can cook with it, drink it or barter it. What’s more, vodka has a some medicinal value as well. Use vodka as a mouthwash or help numb the pain of a tooth ache. Apply vodka dabs to cold sores to dry them out, as an anesthetic for blisters, or to ease poison ivy and as a skin repellent to shoo flies and mosquitoes. Have stinky feet? Wipe the smell clean with vodka. Try vodka too for cleaning the lenses of eyeglasses. Who knew vodka would be such a versatile pantry item?
  36. Dry yeast. Unfortunately, yeast has a very short shelf life. Dry yeast is an essential leavening agent in baking bread, and has a longer shelf life than compressed yeast, but still after several months it loses potency. It’s purpose is to convert the ferment able sugars of dough into carbon dioxide and ethanol. Look for Fleishmann’s Active Dry Yeast, which is the original active dry yeast, relatively stable and valued for its consistent performance since 1945. It’s one of the most essential ingredients to use in your pantry immediately following a survival situation.
  37. Baking soda and baking powder. Both baking soda and baking powder are leavening agents, which means they produce carbon dioxide to help food rise.
  • Baking soda: Pure sodium bicarbonate, when you combine baking soda with honey or an acidic ingredient like buttermilk or yogurt, you’ll get a chemical reaction of carbon dioxide bubbles. This causes baked goods to rise. Look for aluminum free baking soda (a good choice is Bob’s Red Mill, which is extracted in an all natural process without chemicals. Baking soda can last two years.
  • Baking powder: Baking powder has sodium bicarbonate as an ingredient, along with an acidifying agent (cream of tartar for example) and drying agent (such as starch). Baking powder lasts around a year and half.

Other stuff…
Sure, we listed 37 essential food items for your Prepper’s Pantry, but the list could easily continue on non-food related essentials. For example, you may like to purchase extra can openers from the grocery store. You may also like to stock up on firewood, charcoal, lighter fuel, and candles, as well as and paper plates and plastic utensils and cups. And remember the tampons! Any real survival man will tell you that a fluffed up unused tampon is a good emergency tinder source to have around, so come on baby, light my fire!

But while we’re still on the topic of essential foods to stock, consider this…. If you’re lucky enough to have a root cellar, then you can stock fresh apples, potatoes, onions and garlic to last you several months, but remember, never store them in plastic bags or in the refrigerator.
They must be stored in a cool dark, and well ventilated space, and away from pests, which is not easy to do.

Finally, know that it’s okay to stock up on junk food. Did you know that Cheetos and Pringles can get a fire going? The content of much of the processed foods you buy has the perfect combination of air and fats to make fire. Who knew that your everyday food storage of junk foods would come in so handy in a disaster?

survival items2

[Do yourself and everyone else a favor-be prepared. Mr. Larry]

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Predictions for 2013

(News & Editorial/ Predictions for 2013)

The first breath of 2013 is a sigh of relief. Finally, a year when nobody predicts the apocalypse!

2013-1

A.  Predictions from various sources
The excerpts listed below have been take from the following websites (read the articles for the authors/experts complete view):
1)   http://www.businessinsider.com/bruce-krastings-2013-predictions-2012-12
2)  http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-12-31/my-political-predictions-for-2013.html
3)  http://www.dailynews.com/news/ci_22290044/predictions-2013-dont-include-apocalypse-once
4)  http://www.cnn.com/2012/09/03/opinion/frum-food-price-crisis/index.html
5)  http://www.december212012.com/articles/news/Solar_Flare_Could_Unleash_Nuclear_Holocaust.htm
6)  http://www.kiplinger.com/businessresource/forecast/archive/forecasts-2013.html
7)  http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-12-20/2013-forecasts-from-around-the-world
8)  http://www.moneynews.com/StreetTalk/Roubini-global-recession-2013/2012/11/20/id/464852
9) http://www.prepperforums.net/forum/general-prepper-survival-talk/955-two-economists-predict-2013-crash-worse-than-2008-a.html

•   The bulk of the fiscal cliff issues will be pushed into 2013. This sets up a showdown in March when the debt limit can no longer be extended. Americans will be exhausted by this process. The poll ratings for the Senate, House and Obama will fall to record lows. The commentary from every segment of society will be against the ineffective government the country has. The ratings agencies will chime in with more warnings that the US credit ratings are at risk. Foreign leaders will speak openly that the USA is losing its position of leadership. The foreign and domestic press will have a field day…
•   Unemployment in Spain will push 30%. Youth unemployment will rise to over 50%. By the end of 2013 serious questions will be raised as to why Spain is tearing itself apart, and would the country be better off out of the Euro. The conclusion, by many Spaniards, will be that it would be better off leaving versus staying. This would represent a big change in thinking, and set up 2014 as the year of the Euro breakup…
•   Barge traffic on the Northern Mississippi will be restricted due to low water in February. The drop in traffic will result in higher prices, and spot shortages of raw materials/energy in the upper mid-west. Later in the year agricultural commodity prices will be impacted by higher cost of transportation. The “trains” will be the beneficiary of this…
•   There will be no meaningful gun legislation in the US during 2013. But the threat of new restrictions will keep gun store shelves empty. Gun violence in America will, of course, continue… Brazil’s inflation rate will push 10%. The country will blame the USA and the Fed’s cheap money policies. > Argentina will default on some of its external debt… North Korea will fire more rockets over Japan. Iran will have military exercises around the Straits of Hormuz. The US will spend tens of billions on naval costs in the Straits…
•  There will be no tax reform, because members of Congress will look at the biggest breaks in the tax code and realize that they don’t actually want to get rid of any of them. There will also be no corporate-tax reform, because small business and big business don’t see eye to eye on it. There will be another debt-limit fight, which will cause another credit downgrade that will again have no detectible influence on the markets in labor, stocks or credit.
•  International Happiness Day: The United Nations has declared March 20 to be a day of worldwide happiness. This is not to be confused with World Smile Day (Oct. 4) and World Kindness Day (Nov. 13). Start practicing.
•  Speaking of sequels: Theaters will be full of old favorites, thanks to the scheduled release of movies featuring Superman, Thor, the Lone Ranger, “The Hobbit,” “Star Trek.” Arnold Schwarzenegger will go back to what he does best, starring in “The Last Stand.”
•  Record U.S. agricultural exports of $145 billion were forecast last week for fiscal year 2013 by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Ag imports are also expected to hit a record of $115 billion, for a positive ag trade balance of $30 billion… U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says American agriculture is booming. Demand for soybeans and wheat is surging across the world, with notable gains in China, Europe, and Southeast Asia expected to support strong cash receipts throughout the year.
•   2013 will be a year of serious global crisis. That crisis is predictable, and in fact has already begun. It will inescapably confront the next president of the United States. Yet this emerging crisis got not a mention at the Republican National Convention in Tampa…The crisis originates in this summer’s extreme weather. Almost 80% of the continental United States experienced drought conditions. Russia and Australia experienced drought as well.The drought has ruined key crops. The corn harvest is expected to drop to the lowest level since 1995. In just July, prices for corn and wheat jumped about 25% each, prices for soybeans about 17%. These higher grain prices will flow through to higher food prices. For consumers in developed countries, higher food prices are a burden — but in almost all cases, a manageable burden. Americans spend only about 10% of their after-tax incomes on food of all kinds, including restaurant meals and prepackaged foods. Surveys for Gallup find that the typical American family is spending one-third less on food today, adjusting for inflation, than in 1969. But step outside the developed world, and the price of food suddenly becomes the single most important fact of human economic life. In poor countries, people typically spend half their incomes on food — and by “food,” they mean first and foremost bread… The Arab Spring of 2011 is sometimes compared to the revolutions of 1848. That’s apter than people realize: the “hungry ’40s” were years of bad harvests across Europe. Hungry people are angry people, and angry people bring governments down. Will 2013 bring us social turmoil in Brazil, strikes in China or revolution in Pakistan? The answer can probably be read in the price indexes of the commodities exchanges — and it is anything but reassuring.
•  …To date, Fukushima has already released 168 times the total radiation released from the Hiroshima nuclear bomb detonated in 1945, and the Fukushima catastrophe is now undeniably the worst nuclear disaster in the history of human civilization. But what if human civilization faced a far greater threat than a single tsunami destroying a nuclear power facility? What if a global tidal wave could destroy the power generating capacities of all the world’s power plants, all at once? Such a scenario is not merely possible, but factually inevitable. And the global tidal wave threatening all the nuclear power plants of the world isn’t made of water but solar emissions. The sun, you see, is acting up again. NASA recently warned that solar activity is surging, with a peak expected to happen in 2013 that could generate enormous radiation levels that sweep across planet Earth. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has even issued an urgent warning about solar flares due to strike in 2012 and 2013. IBtimes wrote, “With solar activity expected to peak around 2013, the Sun is entering a particularly active time and big flares like the recent one will likely be common during the next few years. [There will a an article discussing this top in the near future. Mr. Larry]
•  Congress is preparing a welcome mat of sorts for illegal immigrants. Backers include Republicans looking to build bridges to the growing number of Hispanic voters, who overwhelmingly supported the president’s 2012 campaign. Your taxes are going up next year, even if a dive off the fiscal cliff is avoided, as it appears will be the case, and even if tax breaks are extended for most folks, as expected. The reason: Congress won’t extend the payroll tax holiday, which cut a worker’s share of the Social Security tax by two points. Cost to a typical family: About $2,000.
•   Is 2013 the year Israel launches air strikes against Iran? It’s a good bet.  Iran shows little interest in cooperating with calls to halt work at nuclear sites that are closing in on the capability to fashion nuclear weapons. Uncle Sam, though urging more talks, is poised to send Israel more bunker-busting bombs. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is willing to fight alone, but won’t have to. At the very least, he’ll get radar and logistical help from the Obama administration. “Israel is prepared to act alone in this mission,” says a national security source close to Netanyahu, “but don’t be surprised if you see American fighter-bombers flying alongside our planes.”
•  U.S. Employment “So much depends on how quickly people continue to fade from the labor force out of frustration. That could actually bring down the unemployment rate rather quickly without a strong recovery in job growth. A stronger economy might actually hold up that rate longer than a weak one, because people will … jump back in and look for work. But remember, the unemployment rate is murky as a signal for the strength of the economy.”
• The worst is yet to come for markets and the global economy in 2013, according to New York University economist Nouriel Roubini.
Major economies are either in a recession or experiencing slow growth rates, while in the United States, uncertainty surrounding the fiscal cliff — a combination of tax hikes and spending cuts due to strike next year — will roil markets as well. Big emerging markets like China are cooling their growth rates, while in a slew of countries, national and regional elections are set to take place in the near future, including in China, Korea, Japan, Israel, Germany, Italy and Catalonia, the latter being a pivotal Spanish province whose financing needs affects Spain and the broader Eurozone. U.S. stock prices, however, are high thanks to recent rallies stemming from Federal Reserve stimulus measures such as rate cuts or asset purchases, but with fundamentals eroding, stocks could plummet next year.
•  NEW YORK — Investors need to prepare for an upcoming stock market crash that will be “worse than 2008.” That’s according to a well-respected author and investor, making a recent appearance on Fox Business. Peter Schiff, the CEO of Euro Pacific Capital, says the stock market collapse we experienced in 2008 “wasn’t the real crash. The real crash is coming.” He says that Federal stimulus, or quantitative easing, never works and that it just makes the economy sicker in the end. “The reason we are so screwed up is all this quantitative easing is toxic. I don’t doubt that we are going to pressure Germany into printing. We are like the kid who is trying to get a friend to ditch school with us to go to the beach. We are a bad influence on everybody.” Schiff’s solution is to raise interest rates, but he acknowledges that it would bring a huge downside risk with it. “In America, the problem is that interest rates are too low. They have to go up. We can’t have an economy with interest rates at zero. If the Fed lets interest rates go up, we have to realize that we will have a deeper recession, we have to realize that banks are going to fail.” He points out that today’s “safe haven” investments — the U.S. dollar and Treasurys — are anything but safe. “There are a lot of people who don’t understand what is going on. Look at how many people are buying the dollar. Look at people buying Treasurys. That makes no sense either. The risk lies in the dollar. The risk lies in Treasurys and other currencies being printed into oblivion.” A noted economist agrees with Schiff that a much worse stock market crash is coming. And unlike Schiff, he has given very specific details about just how bad it will get. “The data is clear, 50% unemployment, a 90% stock market drop, and 100% annual inflation . . . starting in 2012.”  That catastrophic outlook comes from Robert Wiedemer, economist and author of The New York Times best-seller Aftershock. Before you dismiss Wiedemer’s claims, consider this: In 2006 he accurately predicted the collapse of the U.S. housing market, equity markets, and consumer spending that almost sank the United States. [From 2006 he missed the timing, because with the Fed printing so much(!) the markets are not free to operate and are not behavin g rationally, I’d give Weidemer another year or two; they will crash us, we’re already in a slow motion crash . Mr. Larry]

2013-2

B.  50 Predictions For 2013
1 Jan 2013, The Economic Collapse.com, by Michael
Pasted from: http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/50-predictions-for-2013
Are you ready for a wild 2013? It should be a very interesting year. When the calendar flips over each January, lots of people make lots of lists. They make lists of “resolutions”, but most people never follow through on them. They make lists of “predictions”, but most of those predictions always seem to end up failing. Well, I have decided to put out my own list of predictions for 2013. I openly admit that I won’t get all of these predictions right, and that is okay. Hopefully I will at least be more accurate than most of the other armchair prognosticators out there.

It is important to look ahead and try to get a handle on what is coming, because I believe that the rest of this decade is going to be extraordinarily chaotic for the U.S. economy. The false bubble of debt-fueled prosperity that we are enjoying right now is not going to last much longer. When it comes to an end, the “adjustment” is going to be extremely painful. Those that understand what is happening and have prepared for it will have the best chance of surviving what is about to hit us. I honestly don’t know what everybody else is going to do. Many of the people that don’t see the coming collapse approaching will be totally blindsided by it and will totally give in to despair when they realize what has happened. But there is no excuse for not seeing what is coming – the signs are everywhere.

So with that being said, the following are 50 bold predictions for 2013…
#1 There will be a major fight between the Republicans and the Democrats over raising the debt ceiling. This will be one of the stories that dominates news headlines in the months of February and March.

#2 Most of the new “revenue” that will be raised by tax increases in 2013 will come out of the pockets of the middle class.

#3 No matter what “fiscal deals” the Democrats and the Republicans make in 2013, the federal budget deficit will still end up being greater than a trillion dollars for the fifth consecutive year.

#4 The credit rating of the U.S. government will be downgraded again in 2013.

#5 The Federal Reserve, along with major central banks all over the globe, will continue to wildly print money.

#6 There will be more criticism of the Federal Reserve in 2013 than at any other time since it was created back in 1913.

#7 The term “currency war” will be used by the media more in 2013 than it was in 2012.

#8 The movement away from the U.S. dollar as the primary reserve currency of the world will pick up momentum. This will especially be true in Asia.

#9 The economic depressions in Greece and Spain will get even worse and unemployment in the eurozone will go even higher in 2013.

#10 A financial crisis in Europe will cause officials to grasp for “radical solutions” that will surprise many analysts.

#11 The unemployment rate in the United States will be higher by the end of 2013 than it is now.

#12 The percentage of working age Americans with a job will fall below 58 percent by the end of the year.

#13 At least one “too big to fail” bank will fail in the United States by the end of 2013.

#14 By the end of the year, more people than ever will understand what “derivatives” are, and that will be because they have caused major problems in the financial world.

#15 We will see the beginnings of another major housing crisis before the end of 2013 and foreclosure activity will start rising once again.

#16 We will see another new wave of “tent cities” start to go up in communities around the nation before the end of the year.

#17 There will be another major drought in the United States this upcoming summer and there will be widespread crop failures once again.

#18 The massive dust storms that we have seen roll through cities like Phoenix in recent years will become even larger and even more intense.

#19 Traffic along the Mississippi River will be significantly interrupted at some point during 2013. This will be a very negative thing for the economy.

#20 Food prices will soar in 2013. This will especially be true for meat products.

#21 In some of the poorer areas of the globe, major food riots will break out. Governments will have trouble containing the civil unrest.

#22 There will be more genetically-modified foods in our supermarkets than ever before, and more Americans than ever will reject them and will seek out alternatives.

#23 The average price of a gallon of gasoline in 2012 was about $3.60. The average price of a gallon of gasoline in 2013 will be lower than that. Yes, you read that correctly.

#24 The number of vehicle miles driven in the United States will continue to decline in 2013.

#25 The Dow will end 2013 significantly lower than it is right now.

#26 When the final statistics for 2013 are compiled, U.S. share of global GDP will be less than 20 percent for the first time in modern history. Back in the year 2001, our share of global GDP was 31.8 percent.

#27 The U.S. Postal Service will continue to experience massive financial difficulties and will lay off personnel.

#28 As violence in our public schools becomes increasingly worse, more Americans families than ever will decide to home school their children.

#29 The Obama administration and Democrats in Congress will make an all-out attempt to pass gun control measures in 2013. When their efforts on the legislative front are stalled somewhat by Republicans in the House, Obama will use his executive powers to further his gun control agenda.

#30 One of the cities with the strongest gun laws in the nation, Chicago, had 532 murders in 2012 and it is now considered to be one of the most dangerous cities on the planet. By the end of 2013, the murder total in Chicago will be above 600.

#31 There will be an increasing amount of tension between state governments and the federal government. The issue of “states rights” will move front and center at various points in 2013.

#32 CNN will continue to sink to horrifying new lows. Piers Morgan will end up leaving the network before the end of the year.

#33 The number of Americans on food stamps will surpass 50 million for the first time ever at some point during 2013.

#34 The U.S. trade deficit with China in 2013 will be well over 300 billion dollars.

#35 The phrase “made in China” will increasingly be viewed as a reason not to buy a product as Americans become more educated about the millions of good jobs that we have lost to China over the past decade.

#36 We will see increasing cooperation between the governments of the United States, Canada and Mexico and border restrictions will be loosened.

#37 There will continue to be a mass exodus of families and businesses out of the state of California. The favorite destination will continue to be Texas, but Texas residents will become increasingly resentful of all of these new transplants.

#38 There will be some truly jaw-dropping examples of violence by parents against their own children in 2013. Many of these stories will make headlines all over the nation.

#39 The percentage of Americans that are obese will continue to rise and will set another new all-time record in 2013.

#40 There will be more war in the Middle East in 2013. But it will only set the stage for even more war in the Middle East in 2014 and 2015.

#41 U.S. troops will be deployed in more countries than ever before in 2013.

#42 Volcanic eruptions and major earthquakes along the Ring of Fire will make headlines all over the globe in 2013.

#43 Giant sinkholes will continue to appear all over the United States and all over the globe, and scientists will continue to struggle to find an explanation for why it is happening.

#44 The peak of the solar cycle in 2013 will cause significant problems for satellite communications.

#45 The U.S. government will put more resources into the surveillance of the American people than ever before, but most Americans won’t mind all of this surveillance because they have become convinced that it is important to give up some of our liberties for more “security”.

#46 Our infrastructure (roads, bridges, tunnels, airports, sewers, electrical grids, etc.) will be in worse shape by the end of 2013 than it is now.

#47 The percentage of “two parent households” in the United States will continue to decline.

#48 “Political correctness” will reach ridiculous new heights during 2013, and more Americans than ever will start to rebel against it.

#49 There will be more anger at the wealthy in 2013 than at any other time in modern history.

#50 There will be some shocking political scandals in Washington D.C. in 2013. We will see some high profile resignations by the end of the year. Once again, please keep in mind that I do not expect to be 100% correct about all of these things. I am just trying to put all of the pieces of the puzzle together just like everyone else is. But I do hope to have a better track record than most of the other people putting out lists of predictions at the beginning of this year. So save this list and let’s revisit it at the end of the year.

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Fiscal cliff issue solved? (chuckle)

(News & editorial/ Fiscal cliff issues solved? (chuckle))

 A. 13 Tax Increases that Took Effect January 1
10 Jan 2013, OffTheGridNews.com, by Tim George
Pasted from: http://www.offthegridnews.com/2013/01/10/13-tax-increases-that-took-effect-january-1/

WASHINGTON, D.C. – President Obama and legislators who passed the bill that supposedly averted the so-called “Fiscal Cliff” believe higher taxes are not only necessary but should be welcomed.

Before the bill was passed a few days ago, the president linked a willingness to pay higher taxes with both Hurricane Sandy and the killing of innocent children 2013 tax3at Sandy Hook Elementary School:
“After what we’ve gone through over the past several months, a devastating hurricane and now one of the worse tragedies in our memory, the country deserves the folks to be willing to compromise for the greater good.” [Some will suggest there should temporarily be less government spending on other things; if the local popuylation can’t deal with the financial aftermath, use those revenues for these one-hit events. Maybe government spending programs should be willing to compromise for the greater good? Just a thought. Mr. Larry]

Washington continued its mantra that it only wanted to raise taxes for the top 2% while guaranteeing taxes would not go up for the middle class. In fact, there were 13 tax raises that when into effect on January 1, 2013 and a number of them that directly affect those not considered part of the 2%.

1. Payroll tax: increase in the Social Security portion of the payroll tax from 4.2 percent to 6.2 percent for workers. This hits all Americans earning a paycheck—not just the “wealthy.” For example, The Wall Street Journal calculated that the “typical U.S. family earning $50,000 a year” will lose “an annual income boost of $1,000.” Obviously this tax increase hits the lower income and middle class wage earners the hardest.
2. Top marginal tax rate: increase from 35 percent to 39.6 percent for taxable incomes over $450,000 ($400,000 for single filers).
3. Phase out of personal exemptions for adjusted gross income (AGI) over $300,000 ($250,000 for single filers).
4. Phase down of itemized deductions for AGI over $300,000 ($250,000 for single filers).
5. Tax rates on investment: increase in the rate on dividends and capital gains from 15 percent to 20 percent for taxable incomes over $450,000 ($400,000 for single filers).
6. Death tax: increase in the rate (on estates larger than $5 million) from 35 percent to 40 percent.
7. Taxes on business investment: expiration of full expensing—the immediate deduction of capital purchases by businesses. There is a myth being perpetrated by both the president and the media that all business owners are wealthy. Mom and pop businesses require capital purchases just like corporations, 2013 tax1but can no longer find tax relief when those improvements need to be made.

***Obamacare tax increases that took effect: Obamacare contains twenty new or higher taxes. Five of the taxes hit for the first time on January 1. In total, for the years 2013-2022, Americans face a net $1 trillion tax hike for the years 2013-2022.

8. Another investment tax increase: 3.8 percent surtax on investment income for taxpayers with taxable income exceeding $250,000 ($200,000 for singles).
9. Another payroll tax hike: 0.9 percent increase in the Hospital Insurance portion of the payroll tax for incomes over $250,000 ($200,000 for single filers).
10. Medical device tax: 2.3 percent excise tax paid by medical device manufacturers and importers on all their sales. Anyone needing a knee or hip replacement will see that expense passed down to them regardless of their income.
11. Reducing the income tax deduction for individuals’ medical expenses.
12. Elimination of the corporate income tax deduction for expenses related to the Medicare Part D subsidy.
13. Limitation of the corporate income tax deduction for compensation that health insurance companies pay to their executives.
.2013 tax2

B.  Latest News on the Fiscal Cliff II (Feb/March 2013), Debt ceiling will likely need to be addressed in the latter half of February.
10 January, 2013, usbudgetalert.com, Debt ceiling FAQs from Jeanne Sahadi
Excerpts taken from: http://usbudgetalert.com/

Does this stabilize the nation’s economy? No, it does not. It partially avoids an immediate fiscal crisis that could have pushed the nation into recession during the first half of 2013, and even there, immediate risks to the economic recovery remain with automatic cuts scheduled for March, a potential debt ceiling crisis, and the payroll tax cut having expired.

•  For the long-term, the U.S. debt remains unsustainable. To be sure, significant progress was made in 2011 by placing caps on defense and nondefense discretionary spending, saving about $1 trillion over 10 years. In addition, the January 1st fiscal cliff deal will raise about $600 billion over 10 years in new revenues by allowing rates to rise on incomes above 400k/450k. However, the largest portion of the budget — entitlement spending — remains unaddressed.
•  The rapid growth of Medicare and Medicaid due to fast-rising healthcare costs and the aging of the population remains largely unaddressed.
•  In addition, annual cash deficits of the Social Security program will rapidly increase due to the aging of the population and the program’s solvency is therefore at risk.
•  And reforms to other “mandatory spending” such as farm programs and federal retirement programs remain unaddressed.

All of these areas — Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, other mandatory spending, as well as tax expenditures — need to be addressed in order to stabilize the long-term debt and ensure long-term economic stability and growth. Proposals to reform each of these areas are laid out in the two major deficit reduction plans: Simpson-Bowles and Domenici-Rivlin

.

C.  SAVED FROM THE FISCAL CLIFF!
7 January 2013, Gold-Eagle.com editorial, by Roxanne Lewis
Pasted from: http://www.gold-eagle.com/editorials_12/lewisr010713.html

 Don’t you just feel warm all over? Our House and Senate representatives finally got their act together and came to an agreement so our country didn’t go over the financial cliff. We all now have our direct line fix, for at least the next 2 months that is, until they have to deal with the next self imposed crisis, the debt ceiling. Everyone feels better until we all feel the pain in the next few months from the business owner to the wage earner.

•  They passed an additional year of unemployment benefits for those who have been out of work for the past 4 years and they used yours and my social security funds, or at least what was is left in the funds account.
•  They retained the death tax that was set to expire from $5 million and return to $1 million this time permanently. If they had not there would be more people out of work as they lose their farms to the government and our country would lose even more G.D.P. that comes from these family farms.
•  Payroll taxes went up as well for the business owners. At least we have one more year before Obama Care starts in 2014.
•  They raised taxes on everyone from $50,000 and up and kicked the real problem down the road once again and saved their own jobs.

What purpose does a government serve anyway? It seems they steal from the halves and give to the have not’s. There are literally hundreds of programs that give money away to the population who have no money, no jobs and never completed their free high school education. There are job training programs, which are proven to do little and a Department of Education which educates only a few and not the millions it should. Today we have 47 million people using food stamps, with no jobs to be found, who live in government funded housing and receive Medicaid for their broods. They were raised by a government that told them, we will take care of you because we know you can’t do it yourself and they despise us for it. Just like the countries that we give billions to every year whom won’t vote with us and hate us.

•  We are addicted to credit and finance homes through a government owned Freddy and Fanny who failed years ago but is still propped up by our government. •  Our farmers are subsidized by our government not to farm and then have prices guaranteed for their crops.
•  We have a tax code that is 6 feet tall, which no one understands except a computer program. Accountants would be out of tax work if the code was simplified but then maybe they could go back to doing what accountants do such as keeping business books. That is, if there were any businesses left after the economic tsunami the bank bailouts caused and all the government regulations they impose on those nasty capitalists.
•  We fly on subsidized airlines whose fares are lower than they should be, because our government also runs the costly air traffic control system and maintains our airports.
•  We ride to work on subsidized transit systems, after privately owned ones went bankrupt because our government built roads paved roads.
•  We receive mail from a government postman, because it is illegal for a private company to deliver the mail.
•  We watch TV and listen to radio on government licensed and owned frequencies.
•  We are prescribed drugs approved by the government that control us, numb us and poison us. We purchase alcohol, cigarettes and now marijuana in Colorado that is taxed by our government to escape and relax from the stresses caused by too much work and worry.
•  We conform to rules made up by our government in an effort, they say, to keep us safe.
•  Our homes and businesses are required to be built correctly to their standards out of the right material, in the right color within the right area of a lot.
•  Our businesses must have the right number of fire extinguishers or a costly fire suppression sprinkling system they warrant right for our protection.
•  We are required by law to pay a state inspector $150 to inspect our boiler even when they are new, in order to keep us safe.
•  We must drive cars and trucks designed to burn fuels approved by government.
2013 tax4.
We are the ones who serve them, we fix it what is broke, we never complain, we do as we are told. We pay for the roads we drive on and the police that are supposed to keep us safe. We purchase electricity, operate stores to sell goods, operate restaurants that feed others, we hire and pay wages, use electricity, buy cars and pay to have them fixed, buy for our families and are totally controlled in every minute of our life by a government regulation. Their rules are made to control and infect every aspect of our lives in an attempt to tax and take from us every last cent they can. Never in history, has a nation which dared to call itself “free,” been so controlled, dictated to and harassed by a government. We don’t like it but we accept it as it has encroached insidiously and now overbearingly into every crevasse of our lives and so we accept it.

We are but a nation of servants indentured to a mindless, useless, and all powerful, wealth consuming, and enslaving government without any vote from its citizens it is supposed to serve. Our entire life is controlled by Washington D.C. and its army of drones, regulation writing, dictators that work against us for their entire lives, and suck us dry. Just think, counting Income taxes, Social Security taxes, Medicare taxes, plus literally hundreds of other federal taxes on our beverages, phone lines, gas, clothing, cars, homes and everything else imaginable. We give Caesar what Caesar is owed and then some more of our money to a government in Washington D.C. that never is satiated. They constantly borrow and print what they haven’t already stolen from their servants.

Today, even our best creditors no longer want to mortgage our debt. Our Treasury is buying its own debt, if you can imagine such a thing. Kind of like a business that buys what it makes and calls itself a success, reminds me of General Motors and the “Cash for Clunkers” program sold to the masses to sell the cars they were now producing. America is the largest employer and debtor nation on earth. Our debt is so large, that it can never be repaid. Our government is a bloated aristocracy that has absolute control over us in all phases of our lives, from birth to death.

The question is what does our government even produce? Do they raise livestock, plant crops, manufacture anything, sell anything, or create any service for mankind? It is the business creators, the entrepreneurs and inventors who create and invent products or services that benefit literally everyone enriching and raising our quality of life. Yet what has government given us? Absolutely nothing, but law books by the millions, a 6 foot tax code, regulations we must comply with or be shut down, wars over money, bail outs to the wealthiest to keep for themselves and gifts to foreigners who don’t deserve or appreciate it. The great Henry Ford who created the modern day assembly line stated, “Any man who thinks he can be happy and prosperous by letting the government take care of him; better take a closer look at the American Indian.”

If one is robbed today, the criminal gets a slap on the wrist, probation and a fine. Likewise if you don’t file and pay your taxes you will find an alert I.R.S. agent at your door ready to camp out at your business to audit your books and slap you with a big penalty. I am positive that if I hired five tax accountants and gave them my taxes I would get five different answers. Then what do they do with our tax money? Mainly they use it for subsidize their life styles with cushy retirement, medical plans and retirement packages for their spouses when they die. They plan and spend for the so called military defense of the world and hire more cronies to legislate more rules and regulations on the trembling masses without the consent of those who paid the taxes in the first place. They steal from you and I just like that criminal that robbed you and received no punishment.

Government has never made or accomplished anything at a profit. They merely dole out money for votes, so the process can continue year after year. A hundred years ago, government didn’t have programs to give handouts to the sick and the poor, the elderly or the hungry, the unions or the farmers. There were no huge bureaucracies devoted to weakening our populace. We were the strongest, wealthiest, most self sufficient nation on earth. We are still the land of the free but I fear not for long. We still have a beautiful country, with immense natural resources given to us by our maker to use and enrich our lives. We are still a capable nation of smart, intelligent and diligent workers. We are brainwashed into thinking that what our government gives us is free, never recognizing that it was at first taken from us to re-gift to others. The printing press keeps running day to night and night to day diluting our dollars just as a tax is collected without our permission. The more they steal to redistribute, the weaker and poorer we all become. They give to them the bread we make yet never ask nor require anything from those who take! Today’s Americans are becoming weary, as Atlas was weary, in attempting to keep up our role in building and caring for the world we live in. Our governing officials are nothing more than charlatans who attempt to fool us into thinking that what they accomplish is sophisticated, life saving and all important to preserve our way of life.

My father always said, “The government should only do for the people what the people are unable to do for themselves.” Instead it seems our government has created more havoc in the past century than we could have possibly done on our own. They have no conscience, no representation of their constituency and fail miserably day after day and month after month and year after year. Our government’s motto seems to be, “If it moves tax it, if it slows subsidize it and if it stops bail it out!” Well, what if the average American worker, all of us just stopped moving, stopped working, stopped filing taxes and got on the same gravy train our government officials and welfare recipients are on? What would happen then? Makes you think who really is in charge and if the people could wag the dog without picking up arms? What is it going to take to make the changes needed to get our country back on the right track?

Until then I will protect my family and buy silver and gold!

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City Survival: Evacuate (Part 2 of 2)

(Survival Manual/ Prepper articles/ City Survival: Evacuate (Part 2 of 2)

How to Effectively Evacuate a Big City Without a Car
January 16, 2008, Grandpappy.info, by Robert Wayne Atkins
Pasteed from: http://www.grandpappy.info/hbigcity.htmcity3 neighborhood

If you live in a major metropolitan area then you may not own your own vehicle. The city’s existing mass transit system will take you anywhere you need to go within the city. Therefore everything you could possibly need is within easy reach, such as doctors, hospitals, restaurants, grocery stores, and everything else. Purchasing a vehicle is simply not an option for most of the residents in a big city for the following reasons: (1) the down payment, (2) the monthly car payment, (3) the monthly insurance payment, (4) the monthly parking fees, (5) the cost of gas, and (6) the repairs. When added together these costs far exceed the small amount of money you currently spend riding the city’s mass transportation system. [Photo: Living near the older section of an urban region will lead to social issues, a few days sooner than in other areas.]

However, during a major disaster event some of the problems of living in a big city would be: (1) the mass transit system will probably become unreliable or simply stop, (2) deliveries of food to the restaurants and grocery stores will stop, (3) the electricity may become intermittent or stop, (4) the water and sewer systems may fail, and (5) it would only take one fire to burn the city to the ground. The fire could be started intentionally by a terrorist, or it could be a simple heating or cooking fire that accidentally gets out of control. Think about what happened to the World Trade Center in New York City. On September 11, 2001 the city’s fire fighters were able to limit the damage to a very small part of the city. However, if the fire fighters had not had access to an continuous supply of water at high pressure then the entire city could have gone up in flames. Therefore, during a major disaster event a big city will not be a place where people will die of old age.

If you would like to read James Wesley Rawles observations about the feasibility of attempting to survive in a big city during a disaster, please read my post titled, City Survival: Stay (Part 1 of 2) or paste the following website in your browser:  http://aspedantheod.tripod.com/id178.html

The first question is how could you escape from a big city if the mass transit system isn’t working and you do not own a vehicle? The obvious answer is that you could walk or ride a bicycle out of the city. Although this may seem to be a monumental task, it is a feasible option as long as you don’t have to carry a lot of weight with you. In fact, depending on the disaster event, a person walking or riding a bicycle may have a much better chance of escaping a major city if the disaster results in a traffic grid-lock situation and vehicles are stalled for hours or days on the roads, bridges, tunnels, and highways. In this situation it would not be unusual to see lots of people attempting to walk out of the city. Many of these people will have simple daypacks or school backpacks on their backs, or they will be pulling a luggage carrier behind them containing either a suitcase or a backpack. The only individuals who would be noticed would be the ones with specially designed camping backpacks which display a variety of special survival tools or weapons strapped to the outside of those packs. Those individuals would quickly become obvious targets for the thieves and criminals who are also a part of the exodus crowd.

city2 burn

The next question is where would you go and what would you do when you got there. Traveling to a remote small town with very little money in your pocket and with only the clothes on your back is a very scary thought. However, there is a way to make it a little less scary if you are willing to engage in a little advance planning.

Choosing a Safe Destination
Resist the temptation to pick another large city as a safe evacuation destination. All large cities have the same inherent weaknesses during a disaster as your current city. Almost any small community has a far better chance for long-term survival during a disaster event than any big city.

Therefore, you should begin your search by looking at a map of your state and identifying several small towns that:
•  are between 60 to 75 miles away from your current apartment,
•  are not on a major interstate or freeway, and
•  are where you get to them from at least two different directions during a disaster event without adding a significant number of miles to your journey.

A family could walk or ride bicycles a distance of 75 miles within three to seven days, depending on the family. However, the overwhelming vast majority of the people escaping from a city during a disaster would not consider walking that far. They would stop at the first safe community they came to and wait for the federal or state government to rescue them or for the local community to take care of them. Unfortunately their vast numbers will quickly exhaust that community’s charitable goodwill. On the other hand, families that do not stop at the first opportunity but who keep moving towards a more distance community would have a much better chance for long-term survival.

A person could carry enough food and a portable water filter to easily survive for three to seven days. However, you would not be able to carry a lot of equipment, supplies, water, and food with you. When you reached your safe destination, you would be just another homeless refugee family with limited options, unless you had something waiting for you at your destination.

If you rented a car now, before there is any threat of a disaster event, then you could drive to each of your potential safe rural towns and evaluate each town and select the one that would be best suited to your needs. An ideal small rural town would be one that:
1.  is at least several hundred feet above sea level,
2.  is surrounded by farm land, dairy cows, and other typical farm livestock such as horses, pigs, sheep, goats, and chickens,
3.  has a reasonable supply of trees and forest timber land,
4.  has a few nearby manufacturing facilities of any size, and
5.  its residents still have the right to own firearms to protect themselves.

city9 small townIf the community meets the above minimum criteria then you should verify that you could afford to pay the local rent for a furnished apartment or Extended Stay Motel that meets the minimum needs for your family. You can find the phone numbers of all the local apartments and motels in the yellow pages of the local phone book. Call each apartment and make a simple list of the location and phone numbers of all the furnished apartments in the area along with the rental price and the required deposit for each apartment. Visit the ones that are of interest to you and politely ask to see the inside of an actual apartment. Write down a brief description of what you see along with your opinion about the place. If you have a camera then take a picture of the apartment building and the inside of the apartment after politely asking the manager’s permission. Record the picture number(s) on your master list of apartments so you can match them up later. This information will provide you with advance knowledge of your options if a disaster forces you to relocate to this community. Some of the places that currently have available apartments may rent them before you return, and some places that are now full may have an available apartment in the future. During an actual disaster the first families to arrive with enough cash to pay the rent and the deposit will get the available living quarters.
[Image: Small town, the kind of place you want to be/go to when SHTF.]

You should also ask if the monthly rent includes the basic utilities or if the utilities will be an additional expense. The utilities are normally included in the rent for Extended Stay Motels but not for apartments, although the apartment rent may sometimes include the water and sewer bills. During a disaster event it would be better if the utilities were included in the rent for the apartment or the Extended Stay Motel so the water, power, and heat would already be on when you arrive. During a disaster it might take a long time for the utility crews to get around to activating new accounts. Also ask if the apartment complex has its own washing machines and dryers for the use of its residents. These machines are usually coin operated. In addition, if an apartment has a functional wood-burning fireplace then you might want to give it more serious consideration than an apartment without a fireplace. If the disaster adversely impacts the state’s power grid then having a wood-burning fireplace would give you the option to heat your apartment and cook your food.

If the quality of the furniture inside the locally available furnished apartments is completely unacceptable to you then you should consider the unfurnished apartments. With an unfurnished apartment you would have three basic options:
1.  Sleep on the floor. Eat your meals while sitting on the floor. If someone in your family chooses to complain then you can remind them of your sleeping      accommodations below a bridge on a creek bank during your long walk to your new apartment.
2.  Purchase some high-quality inflatable air mattresses, and a folding table and some folding chairs, and then store them inside your storage unit at the small town.
3.  Set aside enough cash to purchase some new mattresses and some good used furniture after you relocate to your new apartment. The seller might agree to deliver these items to your apartment for free or for a small fee. Or you could rent a small U-haul truck and go get them yourself.

Renting a Small Storage Unit
After you determine which of the potential rural towns best suits your needs then you could rent a small storage unit near that town. A basic 6 foot by 6 foot by 8 foot tall unit rents for about $25 per month, or a 6 by 10 by 8 foot tall unit rents for about $35 per month. If possible you should pay the rent for at least three months in advance (six months would be better). You can locate these storage facilities in the yellow pages of the local phone book under the word “storage.” If you can afford it, one of these small storage units could easily be packed from wall to wall and from floor to ceiling with enough equipment, supplies, and food to last a family of four for one-year or longer. Put the heavier sturdier items, such as food, on the bottom of a stack and the lighter items, such as clothing, on the top of a stack. If possible leave a narrow aisle along one wall or down the middle of the unit so you can access any stack inside your unit at any time.city5 storage1
Climate controlled and 24-hour security storage units usually cost approximately twice as much. These units may be a better choice if you intend to make a substantial monetary investment in the items you will be storing inside your rental unit. Just remember that if the electricity goes off for any extended period of time then the temperature inside these units will slowly adjust to the current outside air temperatures. It is not unusual for rural communities to be without power for a few days each year and this usually happens during their very worst weather. If the facility has an electronic entrance gate then you may not be able to get to your things if there is a wide spread power failure during the disaster event that forces you to evacuate the city.

If you plan to store a lot of equipment and supplies then it might be wise to rent two small storage units in two different storage facilities a few miles apart, instead of renting one large storage unit. This would increase your family’s chances of survival because you would still have the supplies in one of your units if the supplies in the other unit were stolen or damaged by adverse weather conditions such as a tornado. If one of these units was climate controlled then it would greatly expand your options for long-term food storage. If you rent two units then you should strategically divide your food and clothing between the two units so that you would have some of your basic necessities in each unit. And keep a list of what you store in each unit so you can quickly locate it in an emergency.

It would be extremely useful if the rental storage unit was located within walking distance of the small town, or an Extended Stay Motel, or some other type of furnished rental housing or apartments, or near a campground. If the nearby furnished rental apartments are within walking distance of the small town then you might be able find some type of job if a future disaster results in your relocation to this community. However the chance of finding work after a wide spread disaster event are very slim unless you have marketable skills that would be in demand after a disaster.

Stocking Your Storage Unit
Immediately after you pay the rent and get a receipt, you should put your own padlock on the door of your storage unit. Then you should visit the local Walmart, city6 storage2camping supply stores, and grocery stores and purchase the things your family would need to survive. However, you should have made a comprehensive list ahead of time, along with the estimated cost of each item, so you can quickly purchase the most important things you will need without omitting any critical items. You could load your supplies inside your rental car as you buy them and then take them to your rental unit and store them inside your rental unit. If necessary you can drive back and forth to your rental unit several times. To the extent possible you should avoid attracting attention to yourself. This means it would probably be wise to buy your food items from several different grocery stores in the local or surrounding area instead of making one huge purchase at one store. When you have finished shopping and stocking your rental unit, you should once again lower your rental unit door, put your own personal round padlock  on the sliding door latch, and lock up all your stuff. Then you could drive home and return the rental car. This could all be done in one day, such as on a Saturday, if you had a plan and if you carefully worked your plan. Or you could rent a car for two days and complete your activities over the weekend by spending one night in a motel at the rural town of your choice. The advantage of spending the night in a motel is that it would give you a convenient private place to carefully pack your food and other supplies into your tote containers so you would not be attracting any special attention in public. The next morning you could then easily load your supplies into your rental car and transfer them to your rental unit. If necessary, you could make several trips back and forth from your motel room to your rental unit.

(Note: As you drive back to your apartment in the city you should write down all the highway mile marker numbers where bridges cross over streams or creeks because these could be potential camp spots for your family if a future disaster forces your family to evacuate your city. You could sleep under the bridge out of the weather and you could replenish your water from the creek by using your portable water filter. Depending on the size of the creek you may be able to catch a fish or two to supplement your food supplies. However, other families may have this same idea so you should be cautious when you first look under a bridge during an actual disaster event. As you continue to drive back to your apartment in the city you should also stop briefly at each community or major suburb along the way and look in the yellow pages of the local phone book. Make a list of the phone numbers of the local Taxi companies, the major churches, and the vehicle rental companies in that area. This information may be very useful to you if you are forced to quickly evacuate your city apartment during a future emergency.)

There are also a few other things you should consider. Depending on where you live, the temperatures inside a rental storage unit will fluctuate from below freezing to over 100 degrees during the course of one year. Most canned foods will not survive freezing without rupturing or exploding. Water will not survive freezing and it will burst its storage container. Insects and mice will chew through paper, cardboard, and thin plastic and consume any easy to reach food items. Moisture, humidity, and mildew will attack and gradually destroy clothes, supplies, and equipment that are not properly stored and protected.

city7 efoodsThe only food items that are specifically designed to survive temperature extremes are marine lifeboat ration bars and MRE’s (Meals Ready to Eat).  Freeze-dried and dehydrated canned foods would also probably be okay, but they may have reduced shelf lives if your area experiences severe temperature extremes. These emergency food items are not sold everywhere so you would probably need to purchase them in advance, have them delivered to your apartment, and then transport them inside your rental car to your rental storage unit. These items are usually delivered in cardboard boxes that can be conveniently stacked on one another. However it would be a good idea to put each big cardboard box inside a 30-gallon heavy-duty black plastic bag and tape the bag tightly to the box like a birthday present using 2-inch wide clear packing tape. This will add a moisture barrier to the outside of the box and help protect its contents. It will also prevent other people from reading what is preprinted on the box as you load and unload your storage unit. The black bags would not reflect light and they would help to make the inside of your storage unit look dark and uninviting if someone who is passing by casually glances inside your unit while you have the door open. However, you should write what is inside each box in very small print on a thin slip of paper and tape it to the outside of the wrapped box so you can later determine the contents of each box without having to unwrap the box.

Large 5, 10, and 20 pound bags of ordinary white rice are usually easy to find at most rural grocery stores prior to a disaster event. You should probably store at least 100 pounds of white rice per family member inside several plastic tote containers. A few hundred pounds of a variety of different kinds of dry beans would also be a wise investment. Dry beans are widely available at most rural grocery stores in 1, 2, and 4 pound plastic bags. Leave the rice and the beans inside their original plastic bags and put several of them inside one large 30-gallon heavy-duty black plastic storage bag that is inside a plastic storage tote. Secure the top of the black bag with one of the twist-ties provided with the bags. Then snap the lid onto the tote. The bag will provide an additional moisture barrier for your food. It would also prevent anyone from seeing what is actually inside your plastic totes if they are made of clear plastic. This would be extremely important if food in the area becomes extremely expensive or unavailable after a disaster event. You should probably use two or three black plastic bags per medium size tote to keep the food separate and thereby help to prevent a total loss in the event one bag of food goes bad. Other good choices for long-term food storage include dry macaroni and spaghetti noodles, instant potatoes, and instant powdered milk. You should probably purchase at least a dozen boxes (or more) of each of these items and add them to your food reserves inside your storage unit.

For some information about the shelf life of canned and dry foods, see: http://www.grandpappy.info/hshelff.htm
For a variety of simple but tasty recipes for white rice and dry beans, see: http://www.grandpappy.info/indexrec.htm

[Note: Grandpappy’s Recipes for Hard Times, Copyright © 1976, 2010 by Robert Wayne Atkins, is for sale through Amazon.com for $9.95.  116 pages, 8.5″ x 11″ format. Mr. Larry]

You should carefully pack all your emergency food into plastic totes with tight fitting lids to protect it from insect and rodent damage and to help prevent it from emitting odors that might attract flies. You should use several medium size plastic storage containers instead of one or two very large plastic totes. This would keep the total weight of each full container to a reasonable level and permit the container to be moved by manual labor. In addition, if the food in one container goes bad it will only contaminate the food inside that one container and the balance of your food will still be edible. If the temperature inside your storage unit exceeds 85 degrees for long periods of time then you would need to replace your rice and beans and other boxed dry food items with fresh supplies every year, or once every two or three years depending on how hot it gets inside your storage unit during the summer months. You could take the old food back to your apartment each October and gradually consume it while it is still safe and tasty to eat.

You should also consider storing several 5-pound bags of white granulated sugar, and several 4-pound boxes of table salt or canning salt, and about ten pounds of baking soda, and a few large boxes of kitchen matches, and a few butane lighters. All of these items can be safely stored for decades and each one is extremely useful in preparing a variety of tasty recipes. Store the matches and butane lighters in a separate small plastic container. Do not store them inside your food or clothing containers.

It is highly unlikely that food will still be available at a reasonable price in remote rural communities after a major disaster destroys a nearby large city. It is more probable that food will skyrocket in price or be completely unavailable at any price. Therefore you should resist the temptation to wait until you actually evacuate to your rural location to buy your food supplies. This strategy has a very, very small chance of being successful, and if it fails then you and your family will die of slow and painfully agonizing starvation.

If possible stack your equipment, supplies, and food containers on some wood boards or on some wood pallets so they are not in direct contact with the floor. This will protect them from absorbing moisture from the floor and it will also help to protect them from water damage if a few inches of water temporarily gets into the storage unit during an exceptionally heavy rain.

Most rental storage unit contracts prohibit the storage of flammable items, explosive items, and food items inside the storage unit. The food clause is necessary because families sometimes store bread and perishable items from their home refrigerator inside the storage unit and this food quickly begins to spoil and stink and attract ants, insects, flies, and rodents. It also frequently leaks down onto the floor of the rental unit and creates a mess for the rental facility manager to clean up after the family has removed their other belongings from the unit. After reading the contract, it would probably be prudent to simply sign the rental contract without asking for a detailed explanation of each clause in the contract, unless there is something in the contract you can’t agree to. In this case you should simply look for a different storage facility in the same general area.

It might also be a good idea to store a folding heavy-duty two-wheel luggage carrier inside your rental storage unit so you could later transport your things to your new apartment or campsite as you need them. Another useful item would be a bicycle so you could ride to work instead of walking each day. Rural city8 hand cartcommunities do not have mass transit systems. You should also place a single battery L.E.D. (Light Emitting Diode) flashlight and a spare battery within easy reach inside the storage unit door in the event you need to access your supplies at night and the power is off.

When you initially go on your rural town evaluation trip you could also take some things from you current apartment with you in your rental car. For example, you could take some of your old clothing, old shoes, old cookware, old dishes, old bed sheets and pillowcases, old blankets and quilts, old towels, and a variety of other old things you no longer use and store them inside your future rental unit. When I say “old” I am not referring to items that are worn out and falling apart. Those types of things should be discarded. Instead I am referring to used items that still have at least half of their useful life remaining. These old things could make your life much easier during a disaster event if they were already at your rental unit. Since you have already paid for these old items they would not be adding to the current cost to stock your storage unit. If you were already thinking about replacing a few of your old items then now would be a good time to do so. You could take your time and carefully pack your used items inside black plastic bags inside plastic totes at your apartment and then later transfer them to your rental car when you are ready to make your journey to rent a storage unit. It would then be a simple matter to transfer them into your new rental storage unit after you acquire one at your destination.

On the other hand, if money is not an issue, then you should consider purchasing several new blue jeans, shirts, thick wool socks, and underwear for each family member. Also some new high quality waterproof walking shoes that each family member has tried on and verified for a comfortable fit while wearing a pair of heavy socks (or two pair of thin socks). If you have growing children then purchase the next size up in shoes.

If you are currently employed in a trade where you use a variety of hand tools that are your personal property then you may want to store some of your older tools, that you have replaced with newer versions, inside your storage unit. This would permit you to continue practicing your trade in your new community if it should become necessary.

If you also include a high quality camping tent, some low-temperature high quality sleeping bags, and some high quality inflatable air mattresses inside your storage unit then your family would have an emergency temporary place to live in the event no rental properties are available when you reach your destination. The sleeping bags and air mattresses would also be very useful if you had to rent an unfurnished apartment. Store each of these camping items inside a big black plastic bag and secure the bag opening with a twist-tie in order to provide a moisture and humidity barrier and to help prevent mildew. It would probably also be a good idea to store several 24-roll packages of toilet tissue inside your storage unit after you put each 24-roll package inside a black plastic bag and secure it with a twist-tie. This will provide an additional moisture barrier for your toilet tissue. If you store all your stuff inside black plastic bags you will prevent anyone from casually looking into your storage unit while you have the door open and instantly recognizing what you have. You should also consider investing in several bars of hand soap, shampoo, toothbrushes, toothpaste, dental floss, nail clippers, hair brushes and combs, barber hair scissors, and disposable razors. These are relatively inexpensive but very practical items that would help your family more easily make the adjustment to living in their new rural community. It would be a good idea to buy these things now because they could become either unaffordable or unavailable after a major disaster event.

Executing Your Evacuation Plan
If you implement the above plan then you would have equipment, supplies, and some food waiting for you at your destination in the event of a future disaster. And your destination would not be a last minute decision made during a life-threatening event. Instead it would be a carefully calculated destination that would maximize the chances of your family’s long-term survival.

If a disaster event has a serious impact on your city, then all the major banks and credit card companies will probably “immediately temporarily freeze” the accounts of all their customers who addresses match the impacted zip code areas. Therefore, before the disaster hits you should access your checking and savings accounts and withdraw as much cash as you believe you will need to survive for a few months. If possible, get $20 and $50 bills but nothing larger or smaller. This will make it easier to pay for things and it will keep your “roll” of bills to a reasonable size. If necessary, get a cash advance against your VISA, MasterCard, or Discover Card at your existing bank by asking your bank teller to give you a cash advance against your credit card. If you do this before the disaster hits then you will should have enough cash to get you settled into your new small town apartment and to pay for your basic necessities for a short period of time. (Historical Note: After the Hurricane Katrina disaster in New Orleans the local regional banks went bankrupt and the larger national banks froze the accounts of the local residents until they could verify all the last minute transactions by their customers at their branch banks in the disaster area. If a future disaster hits your city, then you would be very upset if you had money in your bank and you were not allowed to access your money because of “temporarily policies” your bank might implement to protect itself. On the other hand, if you already had enough cash to last you for a few months then you could afford to be patient and wait for your bank to release the remainder of your money.)

The only remaining element of your plan would be to safely evacuate with your family at the first warning that a disaster was about to strike, or immediately after the disaster hits if there is no advance warning. Families that evacuate quickly and immediately would have a much better chance of escaping the city.

If you have access to a working telephone then you could call the apartment or Extended Stay Motel you are headed towards and reserve the unit in your name and pay the rent and deposit immediately by phone using one of your credit or debit cards and get a paid confirmation number and the number of the apartment you have rented and the name of the individual that rented you the apartment. If possible, you should verify that they actually charge your credit or debit card and not just simply reserve the room for you using your card number. If you evacuate when you are first notified of the approaching disaster then it might be feasible to use your city’s mass transit system to take you a good distance towards your future rural retreat. When you reach the end of the mass transit system line you may then be able to rent a Taxi to take you the rest of the way. The Taxi could deliver your family to the door of the apartment you rented by phone (after you stop by the main office to get the key), or to one of the apartments you previously identified or to an Extended Stay Motel that is within walking distance of your storage rental unit. Also remember to take your Rental Storage Unit Receipt(s) and your padlock key(s) with you when you evacuate the city. (Note: Although it is unlikely you may be able to take a Taxi from your apartment all the way to your final destination if you evacuate at the first warning of an approaching disaster.)

If your family is forced to walk out of the city then you will need a stroller for each small child or infant. Small children cannot walk very far and carrying small children in your arms will exhaust you in a very short period of time. You should also remember to take your list of phone numbers of the Taxi companies, large churches, and vehicle rental companies that are located in each of the communities you will be passing through. This is the list you made earlier on your return trip home to the city when you first rented your rural storage unit. After you have walked out of the danger area and you have reached one of the communities on your list that is not inside the disaster zone, then you should attempt to find transportation the rest of the way to your new apartment. The obvious choice would be to call each of the local Taxi companies. If you have set aside some emergency cash for this specific purpose then you may be able to rent a Taxi that will come and pick you up and drive you the rest of the way to your destination quickly and safely. Or you could try to rent a vehicle, such as a car or a small U-Haul truck. If you rent a U-Haul type truck then rent it one-way only for drop off at a rental dealer near your new apartment at your destination. A rental car or a rental truck would not only get you to your new apartment but you could also use it to quickly transfer some of your things from your storage unit to your apartment. In the long run this option might be cheaper than a Taxi. If you have very little cash then you should call some of the larger churches in the immediate area. The smaller churches are usually only open on Sundays but most of the larger churches have a full-time staff whose primary job is to assist people in distress. These larger churches have people who will answer the phone on weekdays during the day. Just explain your situation to the individual who answers the phone and politely ask if there is anyone currently in their church office, or perhaps a retired church member, who would volunteer to drive your family to your apartment located in your rural town “x” number of miles away. You may be pleasantly surprised at how friendly most of these people are and how eager they will be to assist you in your hour of need. Regardless of the high moral quality of these individuals you should not tell them about your storage unit full of emergency supplies nor should you try to enlist their aid in helping you to move some of your supplies to your new apartment. This activity should be a private matter that only you and your spouse participate in.

Even if you include the above strategies as part of your tentative evacuation plans, your family should still be prepared to walk the entire distance if it becomes absolutely necessary. Eat well, drink a lot of water, and use the bathroom just before you begin your journey. Lock your apartment door when you leave. If your family must walk out of the city then each one of you should be modestly dressed in loose-fitting faded dark colored clothes so you will not attract any unnecessary attention. Wear your most comfortable walking shoes and wear a pair of nylon hose footies under your normal socks to help prevent walking blisters on your feet. If you don’t have any footies then wear nylon panty hose under your socks. This applies to both males and females. If possible, plan to walk completely out of the downtown area of the city during the first day or night of your journey. None of the females should be wearing any makeup and they should have their hair stuffed under a dark color large baseball type cap. To the extent possible the females should look almost like a male except from a very short distance away. This obviously means no visible purses or handbags. All the males should also wear a dark baseball type hat to minimize sun damage to the face and neck. Everyone should keep their head tilted slightly down with their eyes looking towards the ground and slightly ahead of them. The strongest person should be in the rear and the next strongest person in the front. You should have already planned your primary (and backup) departure routes from the city so the person in front will know exactly which way to lead the family. Do not talk to each other unless it is absolutely necessary and then only speak briefly in a whisper. If you must speak to strangers then let the oldest male do the talking while everyone else keeps their mouth completely shut during the entire conversation exchange. Tell your children to walk quietly and to step over anything in their path.
If you have a fixed-blade hunting knife then you should wear it in its case attached to your belt in plain sight. It would be nice if each teenage or older person had one of these hunting knives attached to their belt in visible sight. This includes both males and females.
If you have a firearm then you should keep it concealed and completely out of sight but it should be where you can reach it quickly if necessary.

If only one or two of you are pulling a two-wheel luggage carrier loaded with a medium size suitcase or backpack then your family will not look like it is worth the trouble to attack. Thieves and criminals prefer an unarmed prosperous looking individual instead of a poorly dressed person wearing a visible hunting knife. However, thieves and criminals are always looking to acquire more firearms and that is the reason you should not have a gun in visible sight. This evacuation strategy should permit your family to travel unnoticed and unmolested through a very dangerous life threatening environment.

Once you are completely out of the danger area you should transfer all your belt knives to your suitcase or backpack, along with any firearms you might have. You do not want to terrorize the residents of the small towns and communities you will be passing through. You also do not want to give the local law enforcement officers a reason to arrest and detain you. If you are stopped and questioned then you should provide the law enforcement officers with the phone number of the apartment you are walking towards along with your paid rent confirmation number and then you will most likely be permitted to continue to your destination. However you should not mention that you have a storage unit full of equipment, supplies and food waiting at your destination. These are some of the reasons why it would be wise to reach your destination as soon as you can without unnecessary delays. These are also some of the reasons why travel by night (10 PM to 5 AM) would be preferred to travel during the day. At night there will be little or no traffic and you can see the headlights of the few approaching cars from both directions and your family could quickly get off the road and lay very still to avoid being seen. This is another reason for wearing dark clothing. Night travel during the hot summer months is less fatiguing and during the cold winter months it helps you to keep warm because you are walking (unless a freezing night wind is blowing).

Your emergency travel suitcase or backpack should contain your basic survival necessities, such as a quality portable water filter, one 24-ounce bottle full of drinking water for each person, all your prescription medications, a first aid kit and 100 extra bandaids, a bar of soap, a hand towel, toothbrushes and toothpaste, a few one-gallon ziplock freezer bags (lots of uses such as water collection), a spare hunting knife, a Leatherman type multi-tool, some matches and a butane lighter, some toilet tissue, a waterproof tarp to construct a simple tent-like shelter, a plastic ground sheet to sleep on, at least 200 feet of strong twine or thin wire, a small fishing tackle kit with some fishing line, a wilderness survival manual, a bible, and a blanket and spare socks for each person. You should also take the original copy of all your legal documents, all your cash, credit cards, check book, jewelry, and other small valuables, your cell phones, and enough high-calorie ready-to-eat food items to sustain your family during the entire trip to your safe destination. Each family member will need at least 3000 calories per day if they are going to walk or ride a bicycle all day. If you still have some unused space then you may include a deck of playing cards and some children’s games to entertain your family at the end of each day’s travel. A small solar powered or battery operated radio with an ear plug would permit you to keep up with the current news each time you stop to camp. Sleep in shifts with one teenager or adult always awake. If you still have room then you may include a small laptop computer with DVD drive, or a purse or handbag inside your travel suitcase after you have removed all the useless items that can be easily replaced when you reach your destination. If you strap a ladies purse to the top of a suitcase then it would be obvious to everyone that a women was traveling with your party. Remember how far you have to travel and how long it is going to take you. Each unnecessary pound you add to your travel suitcase will slow you down and delay your arrival at your safe destination. Each unnecessary pound will cause you to burn more energy and require more food and water during the journey. To minimize fatigue and permit the fastest possible average travel speed, you should strap each of your suitcases or backpacks to its own individual folding heavy-duty two-wheel luggage carrier with extra big wheels that can be easily pulled along behind you.

If you decide to rent and stock a small storage unit then you should not tell anyone except your spouse. Even your children should not know of these arrangements. If your children don’t know then you won’t have to worry about them telling their friends. Neither you nor your spouse should discuss your evacuation plans with anyone, including other family members or close friends. It would be okay to give them the web address of http://www.survivalblog.com and suggest they take a look because you found it to be extremely enlightening and informative. But telling anyone about the emergency supplies you have stored in a distant rental unit would be unwise for a multitude of reasons. If either you or your spouse decide to ignore this suggestion then you will probably regret it when a diaster begins to unfold and everyone who knows about your plans shows up at your apartment because they have decided to evacuate the city with you. Normal people behave entirely differently during a disaster because their survival instincts take over and they will not listen to you when you try to explain that you don’t have enough supplies to share with everyone. You are their only hope of survival and they are not going to let you out of their sight under any circumstances. You can completely avoid this unpleasant and potentially dangerous confrontation by remaining absolutely silent about your evacuation plans.

Having an emergency evacuation plan is similar to making a religious decision about eternal salvation. The vast majority of people will agree that it is a truly excellent idea but they will do absolutely nothing about it while there is still time to take positive action.

Conclusion
In summary, the following steps taken now could maximize the chances of your family’s survival during a future disaster event:
1.  Select several small rural towns that are between 60 to 75 miles from your current apartment but are not on a major Interstate Highway.
2.  Visit each of these rural towns and select the one you believe is best suited for your purposes.
3.  Rent a 6 foot by 6 foot (or larger) storage unit near the rural town and stock it with equipment, supplies, and food.
4.  Do not tell anyone about your disaster evacuation plan for any reason. And never mention the name of the town you have selected.
5.  Later, if a disaster strikes then evacuate your family to your preplanned safe  destination as quickly as you can.
6.  Rent a safe place to live in your new community based on your previous survey of rental properties. (Note: If possible complete this transaction by phone before you start your journey, or during your journey when you get      within reach of a working cell phone tower or a working pay phone.)
7.  Your family should now be able to survive for a few months using your storage unit supplies while you and your spouse look for new jobs in your new community.

On the other hand, if you believe your city has a reasonable chance of surviving the disaster then instead of renting an apartment you and your family could rent a modest motel room in the rural town on a daily (or weekly) basis while you wait for the forecasted disaster to pass. Most of the smaller motels have a daily rate and a much lower weekly rate. If the disaster event should come and go and the city is able to survive with only moderate damage, then you could always return to your old apartment and way of life after the debris has been cleaned up, and the water and power is restored throughout the city. Just use a few days of your sick leave during this interval of time while things are being returned to normal inside the city. When you return tell anyone who asks the truth: you and your family stayed in a motel outside the city while you waited for the disaster to pass. You do not need to add any additional details. However, if the water and power is not restored and conditions inside the city continue to degenerate then you and your family would be able start a new future together in your new community.

Some of the very first things you should do after you rent a new apartment are:
1.  Hold onto your cash as long as possible and, if possible, pay by credit card instead.
2.  If necessary have the utilities connected at your new apartment. If necessary have the utilities stopped at your old apartment in the city.
3.  If your bank has a branch in your rural town then visit the bank and change the mailing address on your existing account. Or open a new checking account at a local bank by making the minimum opening deposit. Do not      deposit all of your cash.
4.  Visit the Division of Motor Vehicles and have them change the address on your driver’s license.
5.  Register to vote. You are now a legitimate member of your new community.
6.  Register your children in the local public school system. You will need your apartment rent receipt, your children’s birth certificates, a copy of their immunization records, and maybe a copy of their most recent report      cards or their previous year’s final report cards.
7.  You and your spouse should immediat ely file for unemployment benefits and for any welfare subsidies you may be entitled to. These benefits could keep your family alive until you can find a new job. However, you should not be surprised if it takes a very long time before you actually begin to receive any of these benefits because your state may be swamped with similar requests from millions of other individuals.
8.  Carefully consider who you want to notify of your new address and then do so. It may not be wise to notify everyone.
9.  Establish a budget and stick to it. Do not make any unnecessary purchases. Use the items in your storage unit. Do not tell anyone about the items in your storage unit. It may be a long time before things return to normal so      carefully ration your available food resources beginning immediately and don’t wait until half your food is gone. It is okay if you and your spouse loose a little weight. It will probably help you to better blend in with the other starving families in the immediate area.
10.  Honestly evaluate your current financial situation. If necessary, file for complete bankruptcy immediately. Since you and your spouse have both unexpectedly lost your jobs, a complete write-off of all your previous debts      should be relatively straightforward if you consult a good bankruptcy attorney. A good attorney will advise you to start over with no debt instead of just shuffling your existing debt around and decreasing your monthly payments by a little bit.
11.  You and your spouse should begin a diligent search for new employment. Almost any honest job, including a part-time job, is better than no job. Part-time jobs sometimes become a full-time job after your employer sees that you are a diligent honest hard-working person. You can look for  a better job after you have established some type of regular income. Never quit one job until after you have found another job. If necessary, work two jobs to keep your rent and utility bills paid. Do not continue working at a job if you do not receive your pay when it was originally promised.  There are unethical people even in small rural towns who will try to take advantage of anyone they can. Before you leave a steady paying job you should be reasonably certain you will get paid on your new job on a regular basis.
12.  Become a member of a local church and attend church every Sunday. Give thanks that your family has survived the disaster.

CITY10 EVAC

[Provide insurance for yourself and your family. At minimum, put together a “Bug Out Bag” for each family member, include sufficient cash in the bags to meet your finances for up to a month. Keep these minimal supplies out of the way from your daily lives, but in place for an easy grab-and-go should a suprise emergency strike your area. With fifty pounds per person of individual personal supplies, plus a tent, a “portapottie”, and several cases of freeze dried meals or canned goods for two weeks you are pretty much prepared to weather out the aftermath of most natural disasters and could survive the initial shock of other unpleasant  events. Be prepared. Mr. Larry]

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City Survival: Stay (Part 1 of 2)

(Survival Manual/ Prepper articles/ City Survival: Stay (Part 1 of 2))

A.  Letter Re: Hunkering Down in an Urban Apartment in a Worst Case Societal Collapse
25  Dec  2007, Survivalblog.com, blog author James Wesley Rawles
http://www.survivalblog.com/2007/12/letter_re_hunkering_down_in_an.html

city3 neighborhoodHello,
In the event of a disaster (I live in New York City) I intend to shelter in place until all the riotous mobs destroy each other or are starved out. I am preparing for up to six months. I have one liter of water stored for each day (180 liters) and about 50 pounds of rice to eat as well as various canned goods. I have not seen on your site anything about heat sources for urban dwellers who intend to shelter in place. I’m assuming that electricity would go first soon followed by [natural] gas and running water. Do you have any recommendations for cooking rice and other foods in this event.
I am considering oil lamps or candles, methane gel used for chafing dishes, or small propane tanks. Because of the small size of my apartment and potential hazards of storing fuel I’m unsure which would be best. Please advise. Thank You, – Michael F.

JWR Replies: I’ve heard your intended approach suggested by a others, including one of my consulting clients. Frankly, I do not think that it is realistic. From an actuarial standpoint, your chances of survival would probably be low–certainly much lower than “Getting Out of Dodge” to a lightly populated area at the onset of a crisis. Undoubtedly, in a total societal collapse (wherein “the riotous mobs destroy each other”, as you predict) there will be some stay-put urbanites that survive by their wits, supplemented by plenty of providential fortune. But the vast majority would perish. I wouldn’t want to play those odds. There are many drawbacks to your plan, any one of which could attract notice (to be followed soon after by a pack of goblins with a battering ram.) I’ll discuss a few complexities that you may not have fully considered:

Water. Even with extreme conservation measures you will need at least one gallon of water per day. That one gallon of water will provide just enough water for one adult for drinking and cooking. None for washing. If you run out of water before the rioting ends then you will be forced to go out and forage for water, putting yourself at enormous risk. And even then, you will have to treat the water that you find with chlorine, iodine (such as Polar Pure–now very scarce), or with a top quality water filter such as a nKatadyn Pocket water filter.

Food. For a six month stay, you will need far more than just 50 pounds of rice! Work out a daily menu and budget for an honest six month supply of food with a decent variety and sufficient caloric intake. Don’t overlook vitamin supplements to make up for the lack of fresh fruit and vegetables. Sprouting is also a great option to provide vitamins and minerals, as well as aiding digestion. Speaking of digestion, depending on how your body reacts to the change in diet (to your storage food), you may need need a natural laxative in your diet such as bran, or perhaps even a bulk laxative such as Metamucil.

Sanitation. Without water for flushing toilets, odds are that people in neighboring apartments will dump raw sewage out their windows, causing a public health nightmare on the ground floor. Since you will not want to alert others to your presence by opening your window, and no doubt the apartment building’s septic system stack will be clogged in short order, you will need to make plans to store you waste in your apartment. I suggest five gallon buckets. A bucket-type camping toilet seat (a seat that attaches to a standard five or six gallon plastic pail) would be ideal. You should also get a large supply of powdered lime to cut down on the stench before each bucket is sealed. You must also consider the sheer number of storage containers required for six months of accumulated human waste. (Perhaps a dozen 5 gallon buckets with tight-fitting o-ring seal lids would be sufficient.) Since you won’t have water available for washing, you should also lay in a supply of diaper wipes.

Space heating. In mid-winter you could freeze to death in your apartment without supplemental heat. As I will discuss later, a small heater or just a few candles can keep the air temperature above freezing.

Ventilation. If you are going to use any source of open flame, you will need lots of additional ventilation. Asphyxiation from lack of oxygen or slow carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning are the alternatives. Unfortunately, in the circumstances that you envision, the increased ventilation required to mitigate these hazards will be a security risk–as a conduit for the smell of food or fuel, as a source of light that can be seen from outside the apartment, and as an additional point of entry for robbers.

Security. The main point of entry for miscreants will probably be your apartment door. Depending on the age of your apartment, odds are that you have a traditional solid core wood door. In a situation where law and order has evaporated, the malo hombres will be able to take their time and break through doors with fire axes, crow bars and improvised battering rams. It is best to replace wooden apartment doors with steel ones. Unless you own a condo rather than lease an apartment, approval for a door retrofit is unlikely. However, your apartment manager might approve of this if you pay for all the work yourself and you have it painted to match the existing doors. Merely bracing a wood door will not suffice. Furthermore, if you have an exterior window with a fire escape or your apartment has a shared balcony, then those are also points of entry for the bad guys. How could you effectively barricade a large expanse of windows?

If you live in a ground floor apartment or an older apartment with exterior metal fire escapes, then I recommend that you move as soon as possible to a third, fourth, or fifth floor apartment that is in a modern apartment city4 socialbuilding of concrete construction, preferably without balconies, with steel entry doors, and with interior fire escape stairwells.

Self Defense. To fend off intruders, or for self defense when you eventually emerge from your apartment, you will need to be well-armed. Preferably you should also be teamed with at least two other armed and trained adults. Look into local legalities on large volume pepper spray dispensers. These are marketed primarily as bear repellent, with brand names like “Guard Alaska”, “Bear Guard”, and “17% Streetwise.” If they are indeed legal in your jurisdiction, then buy several of the big one-pound dispensers, first making sure that they are at least a 12% OC formulation.

If you can get a firearms permit–a bit complicated in New York City , but not an insurmountable task–then I recommend that you get a Remington, Winchester, or Mossberg 12 gauge pump action shotgun with a SureFire flashlight forend. #4 Buckshot (not to be confused with the much smaller #4 bird shot) is the best load for defense in an urban environment where over-penetration (into neighboring apartments) is an issue. But if getting a firearms permit proves too daunting, there is a nice exemption in the New York City firearms laws for muzzleloaders and pre-1894 manufactured antique guns that are chambered for cartridges that are no longer commercially made. It is not difficult to find a Winchester Model 1876 or a Model 1886 rifle that is in a serial number range that distinguishes it as pre-1894 production. (See: Savage99.com for exact dates of manufacture on 12 different rifle models.) You will be limited to chamberings like .40-65 and .45-90. You can have a supply of ammunition custom loaded. A Winchester Model 1873 or and early Model 1892 chambered in .38-40 might also be an option, but I would recommend one of the more potent calibers available in the large frame (Model 1876 or 1886 ) rifles. Regardless, be sure to select rifles with excellent bores and nice mechanical condition.

For an antique handgun, I would recommend a S&W double action top break revolver chambered in .44 S&W Russian. None of the major manufacturers produce .44 S&W Russian ammunition. However, semi-custom extra mild loads (so-called “cowboy” loads, made specially for the Cowboy Action Shooting enthusiasts) in .44 S&W Russian are now available from Black Hills Ammunition. The Pre-1899 Specialist (one of our advertisers) often has large caliber S&W double action top break revolvers available for sale. The top breaks are very fast to load, and you can even use modern speed loaders designed for .44 Special or .44 Magnum cartridges with the stumpy .44 S&W Russian loads.(It has the same cartridge “head” dimensions.)
Firearms training from a quality school (such as Front Sight) is crucial.

Fire Detection and Contingency Bug-Out. A battery-powered smoke detector is an absolute must. Even if you are careful with candles, lanterns, and cook stoves, your neighbors may not be. There is a considerable risk that your apartment building will catch fire, either intentionally of unintentionally. Therefore, you need to have a “Bug Out” backpack ready to grab at a moment’s notice. Although they are no proper substitute for a fireman’s compressed air breathing rig, a commercially-made egress smoke hood or a military surpluss gas mask might allow you to escape your building in time. But even if you escape the smoke and flames, then where will that you leave you? Outdoors, at an unplanned hour (day or night), in a hostile big city that is blacked out, with no safe means of escape. (This might prove far too reminiscent of the the 1980s Kurt Russell movie Escape from New York.”) By the time this happens, the mobs may not want just the contents of your backpack. They may be sizing you up for a meal!

Fuel storage. Bulk fuel storage has three problematic issues: 1) as a safety issue (fire hazard), 2) as a security issue (odors that could attract robbers), and 3) as a legal issue (fire code or tenant contract restrictions). I suspect that New York City’s fire code would not allow you have more than a week’s worth of propane on hand, and completely prohibit keeping more than just one small container of kerosene or Coleman fuel. From the standpoint of both safety and minimizing detectable odors, propane is probably the best option. (The odors of kerosene and chafing dish gel are both quite discernable.) But of course consult both your local fire code and your apartment lease agreement to determining the maximum allowable quantity to keep on hand.

Odds are that there will be no limit on the number of candles that you can store. If that is the case, then lay in large supply of unscented jar candles designed for long-burning (formulated high in stearic acid.) I suggest the tall, clear glass jar-enclosed “devotional” candles manufactured in large numbers for the Catholic market. You can even heat individual servings of food over these if you construct a stand with a wide base out of stout wire. Watch for these candles at discount and close-out stores. We have found that the large adhesive labels slip off easily if you soak the jars in water for an hour. Since their burning time is approximately 24 hours, and since you might need two of them burning simultaneously for sufficient light and to stay warm, that would necessitate laying in a supply of 360 candles! (This assumes that the worst case, with the outset of a crisis in October, and your having to hunker down for a full six months.)

Fire fighting. Buy at least two large multipurpose (“A-B-C”) chemical fire extinguishers

Cooking odors. In addition to the smell of fuel, cooking food will produce odors. I recommend that you store only foods with minimal spices. In situation where you are surrounded by starving people, just frying foods with grease or heating up a can of spicy chili con carne could be a death warrant.

Noise discipline. Just the sound of moving around your apartment could reveal your presence. For some useful background, see if your local library has a copy of the best-selling memoir “The Painist”, by Wladyslaw Szpilman. (If not, buy a copy through Amazon or request a copy via inter-library loan. It has been published in 35 languages. The US edition’s ISBN is 0312244150.) The book describes the harrowing experiences of a Jewish musician in hiding in Warsaw, Poland, during the Second World War. Following the 1943 Warsaw Ghetto uprising and forced deportation, Szpilman spent many months locked in a Warsaw apartment, receiving just a few parcels of food from some gentile friends. In his situation, the power and water utilities were still operating most of the time, but he suffered from slow starvation and lived in absolute fear of making any noise. His survival absolutely defied the odds. There was also an excellent  2002 movie based on Szpilman’s book, but the memoir provides greater detail than the film.

Light discipline. If you have any source of light in your apartment, it could reveal your presence. In an extended power blackout, it will become obvious to looters within a couple of weeks who has lanterns or large supplies of candles and/or flashlight batteries. (Everyone else will run out within less than two weeks.) And I predict that it will be the apartments that are still lit up that will be deemed the ones worth robbing. So if you are going to have a light source, you must systematically black out all of your windows. But sadly these efforts will be in direct conflict with your need for ventilation for your heating and/or cooking.

Heat. With the aforementioned restrictions on fuel storage, heating your apartment for more than just a few days will probably be impossible. Buy an expedition quality sleeping bag–preferably a two-bag system such as a Wiggy’s brand FTRSS. Under the circumstances that you describe, don’t attempt to heat your entire apartment. Instead, construct a small room-within-a-room (Perhaps under a large dining room table, or by setting up a camping tent inside your apartment, to hoard heat.) Even if the rest of the apartment drops to 25 or 30 degrees Fahrenheit, your body heat alone will keep your demi-room in the 40s. Burning just one candle will raise the temperature another 5 or 10 degrees. For the greatest efficiency at retaining heat, your demi-room should be draped with two layers of  mylar space blankets.

Exercise. While you are “hunkered down”, you will need to maintain muscle tone. Get some quiet exercise equipment, such as a pull-up bar and some large elastic straps. Perhaps, if your budget allows in the future, also purchase or construct your own a quiet stationary bicycle-powered generator. This would provide both exercise and battery charging.

Sanity. .Hunkering down solo in silence for six months would be a supreme challenge, both physically and mentally. Assuming that you can somehow tackle all of the aforementioned problems, you also need to plan to stay sane. Have lots of reading materials on hand.

In conclusion, when one considers the preceding long list of dependencies and complexities, it makes “staying put” in a worst case very unattractive. In less inimical circumstance, it is certainly feasible, but in a grid-down situation with utilities disrupted and wholesale looting and rioting in progress, the big city is no place to live. But, as always, this is just my perspective and your mileage may vary (YMMV).

.
B.  Cities – A Prepper’s Nightmare & Solutions
10 April 2012, SHTFplan.com, contributed by Jessica Hooley
Pasted from: http://www.shtfplan.com/emergency-preparedness/cities-a-preppers-nightmare-solutions_04102012

city1The following article has been generously contributed by Jessica Hooley of the Salt n’ Prepper web site.
Is it a coincidence that all of my nightmares occur in big cities? While it may be a personality glitch, I find that considering the dangers you face in the event of an emergency while living in a city, my nightmares may be justified. If you live in a city – buckle up. As a prepper you will have to work extra hard to make your emergency plan viable. And while I make no judgments on city dwellers, I must say – MOVE! For your own safety – MOVE! Move, move, move, move, move. Okay. I think I got it all out.

Now I understand that not everyone can just pick up and move because some lady on the internet says so. So if you are in the situation where you must stay in the city here are a few things you MUST have in your emergency preparedness plan.

Define Your Strategy
One of the biggest problems with cities are the fact that they aren’t self-sustaining. They rely on outer communities to supply them with food, water and often times electricity. The second biggest issue with cities is the space. Most homes/apartments/condos don’t have the space needed to store supplies for 6 months to a year. And even if they did there is a severely high probability of civil unrest, leading to looting and robbery. In short – you need a plan. The three questions to ask yourself:
1.  How long will we stay – As I said before, in a city you must resign yourself to the fact that you will have to leave if the situation escalates to a point where you either have no supplies or your safety is in jeopardy. Decide with your family how long this period is going to be. After the power is out, the food is gone, and the shelves are empty in the grocery stores of all liquid – how much longer will you hold down the fort. Too short and you may have bugged out too soon. Too long and you risk the possibility of not being able to get out.
2.  How will we get out – Your exit strategy needs to be well planned out. Come up with a minimum of three routes out of the city. You’ve seen how a couple thousand people can shut down a road. Imagine the magnification of that situation when millions are out looking for food and water. You need to be able to navigate your way through the mess and be prepared to defend you and your family. I’ll go into further detail later.
3.  Where will we go – Once again, come up with a couple places as a destination if possible. Think of relatives out in the “boonies”. Anyone that you consider as being in a safe part of the world. If you don’t know anyone within a reasonable distance (you may run out of fuel) start thinking of areas that you could stay. Hotels. Camp spots. Some place to “ride it out”.

Make Connections
As we’ve pointed out before, the population of cities can quickly turn into one of your biggest challenges. So it’s up to you to change that. Build your community into your own personal defense. Help those around you prepare. Educate them about emergency preparedness. You don’t need to reveal all of your prepping secrets but by preparing others you are ensuring help in the event that looting reaches your neighborhood. If everyone has something to defend they are more likely to band together. By not including your neighbors you are making them a potential threat to you. And the last thing you’ll want is to have to pull a gun on your neighbor if they are trying to take your supplies out of desperation.

Get the Gear
__Bug-Out Gear
Although it may not seem like “gear” – a truck may likely be the most important bug-out necessity for someone in a big city. Reasons why:

  • Capable of hauling ALL of your bug-out supplies
  • You will need something capable of maneuvering around rubble, waste, people and stalled vehicles on the road.
  • Able to store extra fuel in the bed to get further away.

Outside of an off road vehicle, you will also need the following items:

  1. 96 hour kits for each person      in the family
  2. 7 days of water – 1 to 2      gallons of water per person per day
  3. A full gas tank and 40 extra      gallons to haul

Make sure in your plan to bug out, you have someone armed. When trying to leave the city there will be plenty of people outside waiting to stop you and take what you have. You must be prepared to face the realization that you may have to defend yourself with force.

__Water
No matter where you live, water is the basis to sustaining life. If you are planning to stay in your house longer than a week (after water is unavailable) you need to make storing water a big priority. Get creative with your water storage. As you can find in my other posts, polycarbonate containers are great for water storage. If you are crammed on space, I highly recommend “WaterBricks”. You can store upwards of 60 gallons underneath your queen size bed alone with them. No matter what you decide for a storage system – make the most out of it. You’ll want to store 1-2 gallons for each person in your family for every day you plan on staying in your home.

__Food Storage
Food storage goes along the same lines as water. Make a food storage list to last your family the time you will be staying in your home. The key to your food storage is making it secret. In cities, food is likely to completely run out within 3 days. People will get really hungry really fast. And if someone remembers seeing that stack of food storage in your garage, or remembers you saying something about having 6 months in your basement – you’re their first stop. Don’t put yourself in the situation where you are more likely to have to defend your storage by shouting it from a mountain top. Once again, get creative and bury it in your yard if you must.

__Lighting
In the event of an emergency, you will likely be facing a powerless situation. During the day you’ll just have to get used to being without certain luxuries like powered kitchen gadgets and television. But at night, no power can turn into a psychological battle. Especially for children. Have plenty of snap lights, flashlights and lanterns to keep it bright when the sun goes down so the little ones (and maybe even you) can relief during the night.

TIP: In most cities, homes and other living spaces are close together. When using your evening lighting make sure to draw the shades. Test your emergency lighting during peacetime and see which places in the house you can use them without it being seen from the outside. Light will draw more than just bugs during a power outage. And the result could end up in self defense.

__Warmth
Without electricity you may be in for some cold nights. Be prepared with some down blankets and 4 season sleeping bags. You can also get some indoor kerosene heaters. And if you are lucky enough to have a wood burning fireplace, put it use! Get stocked up on firewood and use it when necessary.

Defense
__
Weapons
The terrible truth is that most places in this country where self-defense is needed most, it’s unavailable to law abiding citizens. I’m talking about guns. Big cities, despite their soaring crimes rates, seem to find rationale in banning guns whenever possible. And while free speech is still available – I’m telling you to get your hands on a gun no matter what it takes. As long as you are an otherwise law abiding citizen and you don’t hear voices in your head telling you to kill people – you need the ability to defend your property and more importantly your family.

Other fantastic weapons to have stored for self-defense include:
•  Pepper spray
• Taser
• Trip wires
• A guard dog – a really mean looking one

These other defense tools are great to get someone off your property initially but keep in mind that they’ll get away and may come back with the knowledge that this time they’ll have to kill you to get your food.

__Fortifications
If you plan to stay in your home for more than a month before bugging out, you need to consider investing in fortifications for your home. This includes making some changes that are more functional than pretty. This includes things like plexiglass windows, steel doors, removing landscaping features that people can easily hide in, blacking out windows, etc. Anything that can make your home more secure makes you less of a target.

So for all you city dwelling preppers, I hope this helped. Make your plan bullet proof. You are already at a disadvantage so have a process in place for everything you need to do. Good luck and happy prepping!

CITY10 EVAC[Consider the evacuation concepts shown above and begin to impliment.  Mr. Larry]

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