Assess your personal survival situation

By Dave B Owner of Survival Puck

I have a saying I use on my son. Listen to everyone but make up your own mind. I think this applies particularly to the web. The internet is full of those dispensing wisdom, some of it excellent some of it just plain off base. The subject of survival is no different so before considering a bomb proof shelter, step back and take some time to honestly assess the realistic scenarios you may find yourself in. These are some hard questions you need to ask yourself as you consider your course of action.

What is the likely threat?

Make a list sorted by most likely to least likely. This depends on what part of the country you live and work in. Are you a city dweller or do you live in the sticks? Be realistic, do you really need to prep for a chemical attack if you live hundreds of miles from any likely target? Do you work down town next to a federal building where the likely hood of terrorism might be higher? What severe weather can be expected?  What natural disasters are your area prone to? What else is nearby?  A chemical plant next door might require a bit more planning. Will you be able to count on your neighbors or will they become potential threats after a week with no electricity.

What is your anxiety level  for each of these potential situations?  We all have different fears, some justified some perceived, it doesn’t matter, if it bugs you it needs attention. To me the greatest good I get from being prepared is the peace of mind it brings and a sense of control over unpredictable circumstances. I do not live in fear of terrorism, I live and work far from likely targets.  I made a conscience decision not to worry about it. Of course my neighbor may feel completely different. Based on your feelings go back and reorder your list.

What is your level of commitment?

It all boils down to time and money. If money is not an issue there is really no limit to how prepared you can be. Most of us don’t fall into this category, we have to pick and chose what to prepare for and to what extent. Those on a budget should spend wisely on those items that will help across a wide range of scenarios. In other words be sure you have flashlights and batteries before investing in the rifle and scope.

How much time can you devote to this, will you really ever finish digging a fallout shelter in your crawl space? Are you better off making sure your water pipes in that crawl space are well insulated so they don’t freeze and split during a power outage plus a cold snap?  Will you take the time to change the filters on your reverse osmosis water filter system or just keep a rotating stash of gallon water jugs in a closet?  The message here is bite off what you can chew.

What are your Skills Sets?

In my view this is an overlooked area that requires some soul searching.

Can you change a flat tire, can you cook over an open fire, could you sew up a wound on a child, could you butcher an animal, do you know how find and  turn off a gas valve, could you kill someone?  Really consider your skills when selecting equipment or making plans. Just because you can purchase the Navy seal gear does not give you the Navy seal skill set. As a rule I do not rely on items that I have no real experience with. I don’t want to learn a new skill set while tiring to survive at the same time.

What is your fitness?

How far can you walk? How far can you walk with a pack? How far can you walk with a pack up hill in the rain?  Let’s be honest, we are part of a sedentary society. Many of us have no clue what it would mean to hike 10 miles home or to a bug out location once your car becomes useless. Could you swim a river if a bridge was down? Are you better off  sheltering in place and be prepared for marauders then  going cross country only to blow out your knee 2 miles from home. In my opinion this is one of the most limiting factors we face and really should be the base line you plan around. Seriously load up a pack with 40 or 50 lbs of gear and see how far you can go. I think lots of us would find the result sobering. Being painfully honest on this point could save your life.

So there are some things to think about, but as I mentioned make up your own mind it is your life to save.

Be sure to take a look at Dave’s Survival Puck Series – he is also an advertiser on this blog.

The Big Question: Are You Better Prepared Today Than You Were Yesterday?

Many of us have a hard time getting and staying motivated. As time goes on, we lose focus of our preparedness goals or are sidetracked by other unrelated issues. Life happens. But at the same time so does disaster. We need to stay focused and strive to become better prepared today than yesterday – everyday.

What works for me

First make a list of the preps / survival goals you would like to get done – this can be anything from adding more storage foods to the larder, more ammo to the cache, learning a new skill or anything really. Just stay focused on survival and emergency preparedness.

It’s OK if you have a long list. Now, for each item on the list, think about what you can do today – get it done and you will be better prepared than you were yesterday.

Tomorrow, look at your list again. Repeat. Do this every day, checking off each item as it is completed. When you complete all the goals on your list, make a new list and repeat.

Are you better prepared today than yesterday? What can you do today, so you are better prepared tomorrow?

Make a list. Go over your list every morning, try to complete at least one preparedness goal everyday. Complete. Make a new list. Repeat.

How do you stay motivated and focused? Let us know in the comments below…

How to Stop Procrastinating and Start Prepping

According to a reader poll taken a couple of years ago 57% of readers have less than six months worth of food in storage, with 20% having less than one month. I have to admit, being more than a little stunned by the results of the poll.

How could such a high percentage of readers, of a survival blog (my blog!), have such small amounts of emergency supplies on hand? After giving it some thought I could only come up with one conclusion – Procrastination.

I’m sure some readers will pitch a fit in disagreement. They will argue that it’s not procrastination on their part but lack of funds. In some cases this maybe correct, but for the most part, it’s just an excuse for putting off what they know needs to be done.

Procrastination is the persistent habit of putting off doing things you need (and want) to do. It’s always easier to put off what needs to be done, instead of actually done it. Or so we thank – excuses come easily as we rationalize our self-defeating acts of procrastination. I used to have the same problem.

Why people procrastinate and what to do about it

There are many reasons why people procrastinate when it comes to prepping, but it usually falls within the criteria given below…

Fear – Fear of failure, fear of not knowing where to begin, fear of making a mistake, fear of wasting money – these are the most common origins of fear, leading to procrastination and lack of action.

The cure is to have a plan. Make a list, know what to store, how much and how to store it. Don’t worry about wasting your money, you need to eat right? All you’re doing is buying what you need in advance. Buy, store, eat and replace.

If you decide to store and use basic foods such as wheat, beans, corn and rice you’ll actually save money, be healthier and possibly live longer…

Negative Self-Talk – Our mind can be our worst enemy, defeating us through negative self-talk even before we begin. Most of the time we do this without knowing it. Using phrases such as “I should” and “I have to” automatically sets objections in our mind. No one likes being forced, even by ourselves.

These phrases make prepping feel impelled, instead of something you want to do, leading to resentment, rebellion and inactivity. Instead of telling yourself, “I should start a food storage program – soon” or “I have to start a food storage program – someday,” tell yourself, “I want to start a food storage program – now” or “I choose to start a food storage program – now.”

By using the right words in our self-talk we can make conscious choices, leading to positive results and a stocked pantry.

Looking to the end result – When you’re starting from the beginning everything seems overwhelming – you have to decide what to store, how much, purchase it and store it, rotate and restock. You worry about space, temperature, light and other considerations. This can be overwhelming.

We all started from the beginning – the important thing is to start. Most of us can’t afford everything we need all at once and none of use can acquire all the skills needed in a day. It takes time. Prepping is like putting a puzzle together: One piece at a time.

Perfectionism – Aside from fear, perfectionism is the main cause of procrastination. We want everything to be perfect – if we can’t have the “best”, we wait until it can be afforded. Unfortunately, for most of us we will never be able to afford those items perceived as being the best, so we do nothing.

It doesn’t matter how much you plan, how hard you work or what you do – your plan will never be perfect. Mine isn’t. Remember; perfection is an idea, not a reality.

Sometimes you need to go with a less than perfect plan – buckets of wheat, beans and corn instead of the latest freeze-dried foods – a single-shot break open shotgun instead of super brand X tactical rifle.

Do what you can – now. If you can upgrade later great, if you can’t you’re still be better prepared than 95% of the population. The important thing is to do it now, while you still can. What are you waiting for – get to it.?

What preparedness project have you been procrastinating on? Are you a procrastinating prepper?

How Cross-Dressing Makes You a Better Prepper

feather-boot2No, I’m not going to be wearing a skirt and high-heels to the next big event, nor will I be drinking tea with pinky in the air.

Cross-dressing for survival is a far more practical concept, that will increase your chance of survival no matter the catastrophe.

Throughout history men and women have played certain roles and assigned obligations according to gender. Ideas of proper behavior according to gender vary among cultures and era, but generally men are seen as protectors and builders, while women generally fall into the role of mother and caregiver.

Research has suggested, that the practice of dividing labor and responsibilities according to sex dates back as far as two million years.

But are divided roles according to gender, in our best interest as survivalist’s and self-reliant people?

I don’t think so.

I’m not saying we should reverse roles, only that we need to consider learning and practicing skills traditionally associated with the opposite sex. Fleshing out our abilities, can only improve our chances of survival – I see no reason to limit our skills based on gender preconceptions.

No matter how much we deplore the thought, bad things happen – sometimes to you or your spouse. For instance, you or your partner could become ill, wounded or even killed due to unforeseen events, leaving the remaining partner without the skills you possessed.

For example; you maybe a certified three gun combat shooter and master sniper, while your other half doesn’t know which end the bullet exits the gun. Or you maybe able to turn the most basic of storage foods into a meal, while your partner struggles to make toast or boil water.

You’re a team, each possessing skills complementing the other, but what if half of that team and those skills were no longer available?

A well-rounded skill set is necessary for self-reliance and survival in general. Don’t be afraid to learn skills, traditionally thought of as appropriate only for the opposite sex.

Spending time in this area can only increase your chances.

As a man you can learn, cooking and food preservation, sewing and mending, nursing, child-care etc. Women can break from traditional roles, by learning building and carpentry skills, weapons handling and care, hunting, trapping, defensive skills etc.

Consider the skills your partner would need if you were no longer around and get to work obtaining those skills.

Isn’t it time you started cross-dressing your survival skills?

Post-Apocalyptic Education: Homeschooling when TSHTF

This is a guest post by Humbly ~ Zee and entry in our non-fiction writing contest.

How to choose the best home school curriculum

There are many reasons for deciding to educate your children at home. While I adore discussing reasons to home school, education philosophies, or different curriculum currently available today, the following is specifically about prepping to educate yourself or someone else after a SHTF scenario. Please feel free to add your comments and suggestions, in the hopes that this can become a repository of info on a subject I don’t see mentioned much. ~ Zee

There is a famous quote by John Adams that perfectly sets the stage for any discussion of post-apocalyptic education:

“I must study politics and war, that my sons may have the liberty to study mathematics and philosophy, natural history and naval architecture, in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, tapestry, and porcelain.”

While the beginning prepper is obsessed with food, medical, and ammo collection (and rightly so!) there will eventually be a point when you might consider the education needs of you and those around you. If the ‘event’ you are experiencing is short-term, having sufficient materials on hand can help you keep your kids on their educational track. If you are looking at a longer term situation, the means to educate becomes a great way to increase your chances of survival by keeping the mind sharp, building morale by reminding ourselves of the good and beautiful in humanity, and at the very least decreasing boredom. In the worst case scenario it becomes even more important: a way to ensure that we as a people do not lose our history. Even if you don’t have any children, you would do well to consider continuing your own education, or even bartering your ability to teach those around you.

Looking online at home school materials is likely to overwhelm the most seasoned home school veteran! My favorite catalog is the size of the Los Angeles phone book; both in heft and in thinness of paper filled with tiny print (and that is no exaggeration I promise you!). Don’t despair! You really can teach your children and yourself at home with just a few resources. While in today’s world I opt for materials that are fun and match the learning styles of my 3 children, if TSHTF I will need to streamline my bookshelf. After all, I will be counting on them to help with daily survival… while our current plan involves building self-sufficiency skills, there will likely be a shift in our learning priorities.

So, put on your thinking caps, grab a pencil and paper, and let’s go!

A word about books…

Even though my oldest is only in 9th grade, I choose to search out college texts (‘101’ level) to put on the shelf. If I can read the book, then I can teach him what he needs to know. College books are plentiful and, honestly, many of the freshman and non-majors texts are written on a jr. high reading level. Check the trash cans at the university on book buy back days, I find lots of great textbooks that are barely opened sitting on the ground. To stay in business text book manufacturers and schools are in collusion to have the students buy the latest editions, even though sometimes the only difference between editions is the cover art. When the bookstores no longer buy the older editions you can benefit. Thrift shops are great too: I recently picked up a new Norton’s Anthology ($65) for $2. Be sure to check for distracting underlining and highlighting inside. I can tape up a ripped spine, but an annoying doodle can ruin my day.

Reading, Writing, and ‘Rithmatic

There is a reason the old rhyme elevates these three subjects. The mastery of hearing ideas and gathering info, using logic to understand and calculate a response, and effectively communicating that response has been the basis of education since the Ancients. If these subjects were taught well today, even at the expense of ‘health’ and ‘social studies’, our country would perhaps be in a different place altogether. Ahem. Anyway, a few basic reference books can help us begin to appropriate these skills for our own.

Reading and Literature

While the novels on my shelf come and go, there are a few literature reference books that I keep on hand to ensure that I can give my children a good taste of the world’s literature. First of all, though I love original unabridged texts, my children aren’t so eager to read Mesopotamian poetry that I need to spend lots of money and waste valuable shelf space storing it. In these situations anthologies are invaluable! Norton’s Anthologies are the classic standby, and you can get them for Western Lit, British Lit, etc.

I also have a few guides that help us get through the books:

If you have the means to charge electronic devices, you can download thousands of free books to your computer or e-reader. We have more than paid for the price of a Kindle with our free books. Since I prefer to hold a ‘real’ book, I also source most classics at the thrift store for under a $1. We do have a few great novels hanging around too; you are never too old to visit the Secret Garden when you are cross, and there is nothing like traveling with Sam and Frodo when you are feeling small.

I will add here a word about history. I do have a thrift-store sourced History textbook (Spielgovel is the standard beginning college text) but I also really believe in learning history through the works, both fiction and non-fiction, written at the time. The text book gives us the background info, while the literature puts the meat on the bones.

Writing

If you can’t think clearly, you can’t communicate clearly. For the Apocalyptic Homeschooler, logic will be learned hands on by daily building and planning. I intend to have the children write in journals every day as well as keep detailed records for the family. A few handbooks will help us keep our skills sharp:

  • Dictionary: Please don’t get a modern one! You can find a nice, huge, old one in your thrift store for pennies. (I bought a 3 volume one for $3!) Same goes for a thesaurus.
  • The ABC’s and all Their Tricks by Margaret Bishop (an almost too detailed spelling rules book)
  • Rod and Staff English Handbook (very, very detailed; for grammar nerds)
  • Writing Aids by Marcia Somerville (any basic high school writing hand book will do here)

Any Writing Reference book from a college trash can (I love free!)

Honestly, I want them to communicate well but at the end of the world diagramming gerunds will not be a high priority.

Mathematics

Math is important not only because you might need to measure something (with no app!) but because it helps order the mind. I am not great at math, so I have found wonderful success by using texts written to college aged remedial students. My son with learning disabilities prefers these texts to the public high school ones, as they are not inundated with flashy colors and distracting pc photo shots. The one we use can be found very cheaply on line, if you get an older edition:

Basic College Mathematics by Lial

This book covers basic counting up to introductory algebra. Be sure to use the ISBN to find the matching answer book for your text.

I currently have thrift-store sourced texts for Algebra 1 and 2 and Geometry, but I will pick up others as each book explains things a little differently. Remember, grab that solutions book by searching online via the ISBN. It really helps!

*There are also great DVDs available for math instruction; again, the older editions can be found online relatively cheaply. If internet is available the Khan academy site is amazing (and free). Anticipating internet will not be available, I chose to have DVDs on the shelf that take us through Algebra 2 (we use the DVDs from Houghton Mifflin for the Aufmann, Barker, Lockwood math books, as the teacher Dana Mosely is very gifted. His ‘Chalkdust’ curriculum is very expensive, but the HM DVD’s are the same at under $50 a pop when found used online. A person who is reasonably good at math would not need these; my daughter does not use them, but I do.)

Other Subjects

Science, Geography, History… My kids jokingly refer to these as ‘after lunch’ subjects. Ideally one learns about these things first hand; Geography when the kids ask about something in the news, science when planting or butchering, etc. A few basic items make this possible:

A globe or atlas

World History by Spielgovel (addressed above under Reading)

Visual Timeline book (DK and National Geographic put out great ones).

We also enjoy a narrative history series called A History of… by Susan Wise Bauer. She has also written a child’s series, The Story of the World.

If you like filling in blank maps, you might like a book like Uncle Josh’s Outline Map Book.

For Science, your choice of texts would include books you probably already have in your prepper library. Plant ID books, Medical guides, books on trapping, gardening, star and constellation guides and animal husbandry all fall under the natural sciences.

For higher education I chose to stock 3 basic books for reference;

Conceptual Physical Science, Conceptual Chemistry, and Conceptual Physics.

These books are written for the non-major, so difficult concepts are presented in easy-to-understand language. Older editions can be found in the $10 range. Really, any college text will be fun to read through, as long as you remember to get those ‘101’ type texts.

Modern biology books focus a great deal on molecular biology. I chose to hold for a non-major’s type book to have on my shelf for that reason. I’m still on the hunt!

Electives

If you don’t have great reference books, get them now and throw them on your coffee table. You will be surprised how much they add to your life right now! You can find these cheaply at thrift stores, often in perfect condition. We love the Story of Architecture by Glancy, the Story of Philosophy by Magee, and the Story of Painting by Sister Wendy. We also have a guitar and a few songbooks on hand, as well as a fun book on making instruments from odds and ends.

Faith

Last but not least! Whatever your religion, you are teaching that to your children and those around you by example. My example is not always what I want it to be, so I like to augment with great books about the virtues I want my family to acquire (Bennett’s Book of Virtues is wonderful for a nightly read-aloud for any age). If your faith is expressed through music, art, candles, or whatever, make sure you have the supplies for that on hand. We are Orthodox Christians, so I have a Bible, some commentaries and a Bible Atlas, writings from the church fathers, lives of the Saints for inspiration, and so on. I also have the materials to hold a service in my home (service books, supplies for communion bread (we call it prosfora) and etc. Those aren’t necessary, of course, but since we practice our faith every day with tangible routines and etc., being able to maintain that routine will be an extra anchor in tough times.

Odds and Ends

Come September, watch those back to school sales and stock up! Don’t forget lots of lined paper, printer paper for drawing, and pens /pencils. Do buy the World’s Quietest Pencil Sharpener from Classroom Friendly Supplies. You will write me back and thank me, I promise! (We have 4!). Get more lined paper. Grab colored pencils, too, and paper clips. A metal ruler, good scissors, and extra erasers will come in handy. We also use quite a few index cards, but that is an extra. Did I say grab more lined notebook paper? Now double that amount! Folders or binders are cheap in September as well.

Interestingly enough, I have found great supplies at the thrift store. Boxes of outdated printer paper (great for art!), cartons of paper clips, drafting tools, and even a giant industrial paper cutter were all added to my stash for pennies on the dollar. I have been gifted with an old set of encyclopedias, and I am carefully considering wether they are worth the storage space. When I was young I loved looking though them, and much of the information in them is still valid. The out of date material may be of interest to remember a world that once was.

Conclusion

I truly believe that it is possible to pursue higher education at home. It takes a great perseverance and patience, but the reward is so great that I consider it the best return on an investment that I have ever received. In a post-apocalyptic world home schooling will be a difficult necessity. I believe with a little preparation it can be done not only inexpensively, but thoroughly and well.

I am sure there are a few things that I have forgotten, and a few things that I might have downplayed that you think are important. I welcome your thoughts and anticipate a great discussion.

This is an entry in our nonfiction writing contest – This contest will end on June 29 2013  – prizes include:

Normalcy Bias… Are you normal?

This guest post by Worrisome and entry in our non-fiction writing contest.

I have been wondering about why so many people seem so incapable of seeing all the changes that are happening right in front of us.  Why instead of so clearly seeing that things are slowly going ever so wrong, they doubt themselves or refuse to believe that there is anything different happening or that they can do anything to effect change.  In reading 299 Days, the author speaks of normalcy bias as a problem between him and his wife, and candidly many on this blog speak of spouses and children that “just don’t seem to get what we are seeing”.  And so I decided to write a bit about it.

The reason why is straight the Wikipedia website……

“The normalcy bias, or normality bias, refers to a mental state people enter when facing a disaster. It causes people to underestimate both the possibility of a disaster occurring and its possible effects. This often results in situations where people fail to adequately prepare for a disaster, and on a larger scale, the failure of governments to include the populace in its disaster preparations. The assumption that is made in the case of the normalcy bias is that since a disaster never has occurred then it never will occur. It also results in the inability of people to cope with a disaster once it occurs. People with a normalcy bias have difficulties reacting to something they have not experienced before. People also tend to interpret warnings in the most optimistic way possible, seizing on any ambiguities to infer a less serious situation.

The normalcy bias may be caused in part by the way the brain processes new data. Research suggests that even when the brain is calm, it takes 8–10 seconds to process new information. Stress slows the process, and when the brain cannot find an acceptable response to a situation, it fixates on a single and sometimes default solution that may or may not be correct. An evolutionary reason for this response could be that paralysis gives an animal a better chance of surviving an attack; predators are less likely to eat prey that isn’t struggling.

The normalcy bias often results in unnecessary deaths in disaster situations. The lack of preparation for disasters often leads to inadequate shelter, supplies, and evacuation plans. Even when all these things are in place, individuals with a normalcy bias often refuse to leave their homes. Studies have shown that more than 70% of people check with others before deciding to evacuate.[2]

The normalcy bias also causes people to drastically underestimate the effects of the disaster. Therefore, they think that everything will be all right, while information from the radio, television, or neighbors gives them reason to believe there is a risk. This creates a cognitive dissonance that they then must work to eliminate. Some manage to eliminate it by refusing to believe new warnings coming in and refusing to evacuate (maintaining the normalcy bias), while others eliminate the dissonance by escaping the danger. The possibility that some may refuse to evacuate causes significant problems in disaster planning.

Not limited to, but most notably: The Nazi genocide of millions of Jews. Even after knowing friends and family were being taken against their will, the Jewish community still stayed put, and refused to believe something was “going on.” Because of the extreme nature of the situation it is understandable why most would deny it.

The list of citable examples of a sinking nation are endless…..

As some of you know I live here in California where things are definitely degrading….

  • The state is broke!  Cities are going bankrupt… San Bernardino, Stockton and Vallejo.  Taxes are going up. Sales taxes, income taxes, gas taxes, dmv fees, new and additional taxes on paint and lumber   products.
  • The unemployment level is higher than the national average.
  • Every city and county is laying off fire fighters and police officers.  Many   cities won’t even dispatch cars now for simple situations…you want to file a report about someone breaking into   your car?  Go to the web and type it up yourself.  And don’t expect anyone to ever show up to talk to you about   it.
  • Most every state, county and city employee has been   promised a huge pension that the retirement plans cannot honor but they continue to make the “promise” as if it will all work out.
  • San Juaquin Valley Farmers have gone bankrupt in record numbers   because the terrible trio, Babs Boxer, Diane Feinstein and Nancy Pelosi shut off   long contracted water rights in favor of a smelt.
  • There is no lumber industry and the fishing industry   is definitely a ghost of its former self.  But the marijuana industry   is the actual leading cash crop in many counties. THAT industry pays NO taxes AND most involved also   use food stamps and such as a cover.
  • I happened to be driving around Santa Rosa, California   a few days ago, the decals on the police cars doors have missing letters in them, as in P_li_e.  The city streets there are so bad that your   teeth rattle driving on them.

Nationally,

  • We all know prices are higher………
  • We know that less than 1000 people in DC are making   unreasonable and irresponsible decisions every day.  Our system of governance and laws make overturning their   nutty decisions a long and arduous process with inconsistent results.   (ObamaCare, anybody?)   And this nation of sheeples keeps re electing them because they would rather watch football and have better knowledge on the statistics of every play   and every game than educate themselves about their futures and what their politicians are   doing.
  • Now we have a huge gun control controversy both at   the states level and at the federal level.  Despite a majority of citizens voicing concerns,   it is possible we will lose our right to defend ourselves.
  • We have watched and waited as the dollar has become near worthless   and our country’s financial status in the world become a joke.  We have watched and waited as our leaders have allowed   our borders to leak. We have watched and waited while our leaders plotted   mayhem with Fast and Furious.  We have stood by and allowed our   leaders to get away with allowing the killing of an Ambassador in Libya.    We have watched and waited while ObamaCare has become the law of the land.  We are watching a Congressman   trying to pass a law to allow a President to be in office for longer   than 2 terms.  We are watching the Fed and our Treasury department   swap x’s and o’s and call it “Quantitative Easing”.  We have watched and waited while less than 1000 people, leaders   supposedly in DC, have buried us in debt.  We paid zero attention when our political leaders made it legal to   detain a citizen of this country indefinitely.  And now, we are watching and waiting as gun control becomes the latest   freedom to die.

Come on folks, quit doubting yourselves, it is here and it IS happening!

This nation and its citizens have become paralyzed by the Normalcy Bias.  We don’t want to think that this great nation is declining. We don’t know what to do about it, we feel overwhelmed and helpless, so we do nothing.  Or worse, many are vilifying those who are beginning to voice their fears and they mock those that are making attempts to get away from it.   You can look to your televisions, the late night comedians or the Piers Morgans if you are doubting yourself at all on this one.

In Germany, there came a time, when the government demanded its citizens turn in their guns.  After which 2.2 Million Nazis began rounding up Jews and any other groups they deemed a threat or they just didn’t like and started exterminating them.  They terminated the lives of 6 million people.  Had each family kept their gun and taken two or three Nazis out when they came breaking down their doors, the Nazi party would not have been able to grow to 8 million before the end of the war.  Do the math folks, 2.2 Million Nazis, 6 million Jews….Dominating by fear and intimidation, those 2.2 million fervent “believers” waged such a war of intimidation on the masses that they caved! And the Jews died because they refused to believe it could possibly happen.   The United States and most of Europe did not respond.  Why did they not?  Normalcy Bias. Believing the unbelievable is a monumental mind change.

Now, because of the exceptional events of madmen, the citizens of the United States are all being branded as incompetent and criminal and not capable of handling weapons.  As in so many other areas of our Constitution, we are about to become the victims of yet another breach in its tenants.

Normalcy bias needs to take a back seat, we need to put ourselves in the driver’s seat and get to work! Getting ourselves prepared is primary, but we need to recognize that it is not enough.

We must reach out and begin to change the minds of those in the middle that think they are powerless and are continuing to “wait and see”.  The progressives have a huge head start on us.  They are in our schools and colleges, unions, political forums, etc.  We need get much more active, put our money out there to support groups that are deemed of like determinations, and be much more active in forming small groups that can come together in common cause to effectuate change.  That is why I found myself 2.5 hours from home in Santa Rosa, Ca the other night, listening for myself to the crowd surrounding Mike Thompson on the gun control issue.  I talked to other people that were there, we decided we are going to get together for coffee and discuss which groups we can help and how we can help them.  It has to start somewhere.  And you know the saying……….’no matter where ya go, there ya are”.  Everyone has a small circle of influence.

Look at MD and how he has grown his blog.  We can all speak to our neighbors, co workers, church and club members and share our philosophy.  Even when they don’t want to listen, you might be able to quietly slide a thought in on them that will niggle at them sometime later in the middle of the night. Don’t bow your head to ridicule or dismissal.  Hold your ground, don’t be a jerk about it, but HOLD.YOUR.GROUND! Start learning and teaching, speak up and don’t back down.  Do it when you are sober, do it when you have calmly collected your thoughts, but it starts with each of us doing “more”.  The time is now and the who is YOU.

This contest will end on February 16 2013  – prizes include:

Well what are you waiting for – email your entries today. But please read the rulesthat are listed below first… Yes

My New Year’s Resolution …

Many have asked me about my “My New Year’s resolution” and I’m sorry to disappoint but I don’t make My New Year’s resolutions. I try to do the bast that I can regardless of the time of year.

But I know many folks make resolutions and some even stick to then past the first week – so, if you’ve made a resolution for the coming year please feel free to share with the rest of the pack in the comments below…

And who knows, letting others know about your New Year’s resolution might give you the incentive that you’ll need to stick with it through out the coming year and beyond… 😀

A Woman’s Perspective on Prepping

by Marjory Wildcraft

For the last few days there have been fairly strong winds blowing. I’ve been on edge, nervous, and fretful, but not quite conscious of it. Sort of like when the radio station turns to static and it takes you a while to notice it. Only today did I realize (again) that sustained strong winds have a disturbing effect on me. Do winds bother you? Have you noticed?

But even though I have ‘the answer’ to why I am feeling angst, I persist in wondering if it is just me, or are my feelings resonating with a larger collective nervousness?

So I look for outward signs to see if there is angst reflected out there.

First off, it seems there must be some psychological buildup from the whole Mayan calendar thing. But that doesn’t quite fit, and plus I am looking for something more tangible to demonstrate collective angst.

Oh yeah, there is that school shooting which has put everyone on edge. Or perhaps the shooting was an eruption of the collective angst we all feel. Which came first, the chicken or the egg? But regardless, the shooting is clearly polarizing us on a large-scale.

If you are in the prepper circles, then no doubt you are hearing all sorts of alternative news. And we are seeing a barrage of ‘2nd amendment is going away’ fear based marketing. It is compelling too – I am thinking, “gosh perhaps I should buy some extra magazines” or “hmmm, should I get that book on hiding guns and caching now”?

Yes, I confess – I have deeply indulged in retail therapy in response to the fear and panic that rises up from time to time.

My husband doesn’t think much of this ‘therapy’ from his perspective every month of paying the credit cards.

It is a good thing he loves me so much.

So I tune in to Alex Jones and brace myself. Sure enough, Alex’s take on the whole thing is that the shooting was a Gov’t sponsored setup with the sole intent of getting better control over us.

I am all too aware of how utterly corrupt our Gov’t is and I don’t put it past them. But what is really true? I start to go numb trying to comprehend all these horrible twists on reality.

But everyone has an opinion and there is real anger coming up over what should be ‘done’. Everyone is talking, blaming, pointing fingers… Worrying about what will happen next. Guessing the hidden agenda of Obama or the United Nations.

So I don’t think the wind is the sole reason for my nervousness. It is both a personal and collective energetic.

It’s night (it gets dark so early – oh yeah, duh! – winter solstice) and I am getting to my rounds. I notice the garden really needs some water. Its been quite dry. As I stand there magically able to offer moisture to the plants I notice how soothed I am by the big healthy heads of cabbage growing. I like to grow cabbages in big bunches every few years and make loads of kimchee. I’ve got jars that are four years old that are still good to eat. There are lots of good reasons to eat fermented foods (let me know if you are interested and I’ll write about it). Making kimchee is a super simple process that doesn’t involve ‘canning’. And it has stored fine in my Texas pantry all these years without any special cooling. To find a food that stores like that is an accomplishment.

As I stand in the garden I wonder, is it the comfort of knowing I have food growing that is so soothing to me? I’ve been soothed by my plants and livestock many times (someday I’ll write about which ones I’ve noticed are the most soothing). But perhaps I am feeling a kindness the plants send towards me. Maybe it is simply because it is quiet and peaceful out there.

No matter. I feel better in the garden. This little place of sanity in a crazy world. This place where right action is rewarded and stupidity is punished harshly. I love it. Whew, and thank Creation for it.

The winds are still blowing. But they are from the south and it smells like it might rain. That would be really good.

Marjory Wildcraft is the creator of the video set “Grow Your Own Groceries” available at www.GrowYourOwnGroceries.com .

Letter from one of The Pack – Our Info Kicks Butt and Saves Lives

On vacation in Myrtle Beach, SC. Tonight while my wife and I were walking on a dimly lit beach, we had a man in a hoodie come out of the darkness and approach us. The closest person was approx. 100 yards away. My wife was scared. However, after all the reading of your blog, doing the things you have suggested and with my hand on my weapon, I was NOT scared.

I did have confidence in knowing that I have been applying many of things that have been shared on your blog. Once the man was approximately five feet from us, I took a stand, with hand on my weapon and looked directed at him.

After approximately, two steps, he turned away from us and disappeared in the darkness. My confidence only came as a result of mentally preparing with the info provided on The Survivalist Blog.net, by you and The Wolf Pack.

You have shared and helped make us ready for what may have taken place. My wife finally realized how scary the world is out there and stated that she was glad that I was ready. What can I say? A thank you is not enough, but I my wife and I truly mean it from our hearts!! Praise the Lord for your willingness to help others prepare for what is coming! I just hope they are listening! David P

Throwing the first pitch

The President and Mrs. Mitchelle Obama are in the front row at a Yankees game.

The row behind them is taken up with Secret Service agents, one of whom leans over and whispers something into the President’s ear.

As soon as he finishes, Mr. Obama grabs Mitchelle by the scruff of the neck and heaves her over the railing.

Mitchelle falls 10 feet to the top of the dugout, kicking and screaming obscenities.

The Secret Service agent leans over again and whispers,

“Mr. President, I said, they want you to throw out the first PITCH!” :laugh:

Thanks to Scott G for this…