That day……9/11

note: post originally appeared in September 2013, edited in 2019

This morning while I was eating my breakfast I was watching some footage of the events on 9/11/2001; I just started crying. While I was taking my shower getting ready for work I just broke out in heaving sobs. I am holding back the tears even as I write this. It is so very very emotional for me that I still have a hard time coping with the anniversary each year. I rarely talk about it, and I normally call in sick on each anniversary; not this year.

On September 11, 2001 –

I had worked the previous day’s shift at Station #18, I had worked a shift for another of our Captains. We had run a couple calls that night and I was fairly tired, my plan was going to shower and get some sleep for a couple hours then just kick around the house a while.

I had just gotten home, thrown my station uniform into the dirty clothes hamper, turned on the news, and headed into the shower. I came out of the shower and saw a building burning on the news, I sat down on the sofa to get the details. I knew that due to the height, complexity and staffing of the building it was going to be a bad day for many people, a lot of people would not make it out alive. But I had no idea what was to come.

As I watched and listened I saw the second plane hit the other tower. Immediately I knew what was going on. Not because I am some braniac but the spirit bore witness that it was a terrorist attack. I immediately put on a fresh station uniform, then thought I better throw an extra uniform set into my bag. I headed out the door as I would head to a fire call from the station…rushing, apprehensive, worried, determined.

When I got to the station about 5 minutes later the entire on-duty crew was there watching TV of the events. The look on their faces was horrifying, mine probably looked the same. We did our customary “bro hug” and watched and listened as our nation was attacked. Over the next 20 minutes the crew that I had worked with the night before showed up for duty. Within another 20 – 30 minutes my normal crew showed up. Within an hour we had almost 3 full shifts of firefighters in the station.

Within another couple of minutes we had a call come in from HQ that we were to go into lockdown, a deputy was on the way to guard us and our area was the next target due to McDill AFB and CentCom HQ.

We immediately sent a couple FFs to the store for food, secured the property, and organized response crews, checked in our reserve engines, and set-up a sleeping schedule to ensure 100% manning of all equipment for the next week. We were doing what we were trained to do while tears were being shed, tempers were boiling, and feeling a complete lack of ability to do anything more productive.

Then the first tower collapsed. We were absolutely stunned and horrified; we knew what that meant. To us that meant that innumerable brother and sister firefighters were just killed trying to save the victims of the burning buildings. We had already seen the footage of people jumping and falling to escape the flames but this brought it close to home, too close. Somehow we just knew what was next…we started organizing our rescue equipment and other gear to head to NY. We knew it wouldn’t take us too long if we drove straight through. We knew we would be needed. We packed our gear.

Then we saw the next tower fall; more dead firefighters. I cannot tell you the emotions that were running through us knowing that hundreds of us must be dead. And worse, trapped, still alive hoping and waiting for us to come save them, to pull them out of their trap, to do our job as their brothers and sisters. But weren’t there for them, they died, trapped, alone.

We were organizing the vehicles with a couple other stations when we got the word from HQ that we were not allowed to go. Someone evidently told them we would go with or without their permission. We got word that any missing vehicle would be reported stolen and any firefighter that went would be gone from the department.

More than a few lockers and walls were punched out of frustration, anger, and utter despair.

Calls started coming in for us to respond as if it were a normal day at the fire station. Our station would normally run 4 – 12 calls per day, today was not any different to our residents and businesses, we still had a job to do. But it was different, different to us. We didn’t understand why people couldn’t understand that.

Three days passed with us holed up in our station. The deputy left the next day, it was his day-off and they wouldn’t pay overtime, not enough of a threat. I understood that…kinda.

When the estimates started coming in about how many firefighters died in the collapses we were simply in disbelief, denial, shock. How could nearly 400 of us die in one incident!! How could that many die burning to death, being crushed, being trapped, running out of air and suffocating. All of them dying alone.

We had broken hearts full of immense grief – I can’t explain it much beyond that.

9/11/2001 was the day a big part of my heart was ripped out. I nearly lost my soul during that time. I still can’t really deal with it very well, even now. I’ve never really talked about it before, not even with other firefighters to any degree. Most of us never talk about it other than acknowledging it, then changing the subject.

One day, one day – I will have the opportunity to know who did it, why and face those responsible. I have no idea what I will say or do, I hope I handle it with the love of Christ.

One day, one day – I will meet those firefighters that died on 9/11. I will beg them to forgive me for allowing them to die alone while we stood by helplessly. I will hug them and thank them for the sacrifice they made, their unselfish commitment to duty to their citizens…for their honor, courage, and bravery.

Maybe one day I will get back that piece of my heart and my soul might heal. I might be able to understand to all one day. Till then…..I will shed tears, feel guilty, have bouts of rage, beg God to help me deal with this, and try to get past it.

Thank you for listening to me. I have spent nearly 30 years fighting fires, in 4 years till I retire and I needed to tell someone about this. I am tired.

Today: 9/11/2019 – I am still crying when I go over that day. I am not over it. I’ve been retired for nearly two years and the wound is still raw, the hurt is still real. I fear it will never go away. When I wrote the original article six years ago I sobbed uncontrollably at points. Today as I read it, correct spelling/grammar, and add pictures…well, I still cry. Sometimes life isn’t fair, sometimes evil people do wicked things, and sometimes hearts don’t heal. This is one of those times. I hate it!

 

 

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Why do I like “junk silver” so much?

Precious Metals for preppers - grid-down, emergencies and disasters - gold & silvernote: first appeared in July 2015

That was a question that was posed by a website visitor not long ago. Thank you John for asking that question, I appreciate it. John wrote that question as a “comment” on the website lately. His question was pointed and deserved more than just a casual reply. Hence, this dedicated article to the subject of “junk” silver.

Junk silver is a misleading term, although popular and used to identify a whole class of precious metals available to folks. In my opinion there is essentially three types of silver available to the average person; 1) silver bullion, 2) investment grade silver, 3) junk silver. I will give a brief description of each that is my opinion:

  1. silver bullion for emergencies, disasters and grid-downSilver bullion is silver that has been mined, refined and poured into some shape, usually bars. The mine or refiner will stamp into the bar the weight and the assayed purity. You can also call this type of silver “bulk silver” because of its form. The purity for silver bullion is supposed to be .999 but there is no guarantee of that beyond the reputation of the seller.
  2. Investment grade silver. These are the silver rounds available from well-known, well-respected mints with extremely good reputations. I include the government mints from the US, Canada, Australia, etc. There are some excellent private US mint walking liberty, standing liberty American eagle rounds 1oz silver bullion for emergencies, disasters and grid-downmints as well. But for the purpose of discussing “investment grade” silver I will stick with those that I know and trust. This type of silver can be used to fund an IRA. Which means that there has to be a high degree of trust and confidence in the purity and value of the silver. Most of the investment grade silver comes in the form of one ounce silver rounds. An example is the US Mint Walking Liberty coin (a.k.a. American Eagle). These are widely regarded as the number one silver round in the world in relation to investment grade silver. The US Mint also makes quarter ounce Walking Liberty rounds as well.
  3. Junk silver. This covers a wide range of options spanning over 100 years of US coins. As I said earlier, junk silver is a misnomer. The coins I am referring to are coins minted by the US government to 90% silver coins, US coins, junk silver for emergencies, disasters and grid-downbe used as currency. Prior to 1964 the US government actually made coins that had value to them, not just some vague fiat currency that is used today. The coins I am speaking of were made from 90% silver, the other 10% was cooper.

 

So let me explain what I think of each in terms of buying for emergencies, disasters and for “grid-down.” I won’t go into explaining why or how much, I already wrote an article on that called “Silver & Gold…..Really?” < click here to read the article >

First up, bullion. Don’t buy it. Yup, just that simple. In my opinion you have no idea what you are buying. How do I Silver-04know? I bought some. Remember, I don’t write about anything I haven’t done, tested and have personal experience with. I want to speak from personal experience. Back to silver bullion…

So a few years ago I bought several “bars” of silver, a couple of 30+ ounce bars and a smaller 10 ounce bar. I liked them, they looked kinda cool, not perfect, a little rustic looking. They had cool imprints on them stating the purity and exact weight in Troy ounces. I liked them.

Then I started thinking about it, how did I know that they were actually what they were represented to be. The guy I bought them from had a good reputation and I trusted him. But how did I know who he got these bars from had a good reputation? In other words, I didn’t know what I didn’t know. So I sold the silver bullion off. The guy I bought it from had a money back guarantee from me. He is totally satisfied with the deal he got, and so am I.

So bullion bottom line…I don’t feel that I would truly know what I was buying. In the worst case scenario, grid-down, I try to barter/buy with by silver bullion and it turns out to be virtually worthless. How so? Well, there was a case not long ago (2012) where gold bars had been drilled out and back-filled with tungsten. Gold and tungsten have almost identical density/weight. It supposedly fooled a number of people.

There is such a thing as silver plate. That is a process where they fuse a coating of silver over another metal. It appears to be silver, coz it is on the outside, but the inside is another, less valuable, metal. I have no idea how I would be able to tell the difference. So the bottom line for me is…I just don’t and won’t buy silver bullion. Nor would I accept it in a barter situation during grid-down.

Next up, investment grade silver. I love this stuff! Yeah, I am a little obsessive about investment grade silver, I just Silver-05love Walking Liberty rounds. They are beautiful to look at and have a certain “feel” to them that just lets you know that you are holding something of value. But beyond the feel, the Walking Liberty rounds are recognized around the world as the most trusted silver coin. So you know you have one Troy ounce of 99.9% pure silver…and that guarantee is backed by the US government. Come on…don’t snicker.

It is easy to spot these coins and if you ever held one, you can easily spot another. Yes, they could be forgeries, but would be hard to copy the quality, weight and workmanship. To me that means that you would know exactly what you have and have confidence in that fact. And I think it would be virtually impossible to create fakes once the grid fell.

Come time for grid-down and you were trying to barter one away you would know you have true value. That in turn would give you confidence in your position and give you a strong hand in the deal. If you were the one who would receive the coin you would have a high level of confidence that you were receiving a high-quality, verifiable value for the goods/services your were trading to the other person. But there is a drawback, not all is perfect with the one ounce round.

Suppose your deal didn’t come out exactly to the ounce? I mean that you were trading 1 pound of wheat for 1-1/4 ounces of silver. The person buying your wheat has US Mint Walking Liberties and you are willing to take that in trade. So you get one, one-ounce coin, but what about the 1/4 ounce?

The two of you decide to use a cold chisel to cut a round, removing ¼ of it to finish the payment. Do you get exactly a quarter of the coin?

So there is the problem…coming up with exact amounts that are less than one-ounce increments. But, don’t worry Silver-06there are some solutions to that as well. There is also “quarters” and they are exactly what they sound like, ¼ ounce versions of the Walking Liberty one-ounce coin. They are not made by the US Mint. They are made by the Highland mint and recognized just as highly as their larger 1oz cousin.

A very astute trader during grid-down might know that the US Mint didn’t produce the quarter ounce coin but they will still know it is just as reputable. Now you have the ability to get your purchase/barter to within 1/4oz of silver. If you are wanting to get even closer…there is a solution for that as well.

Finally, junk silver. I kind of like the term “junk silver” but the term is misapplied. There is nothing junk about silver. Silver-07But, I don’t control the English language, I don’t even speak/write it so well, so I just go with the flow. As I was saying earlier, prior to 1964 US coins had a high silver content, 90% more or less. And that gave the coins themselves actual meaningful value. When the value of the silver outpaced the coin’s currency value, the government began to lower the value of the silver. Eventually the government eliminated all of the silver from the coin. They just hated the idea that United States currency actually had value in and of itself. Besides, they realized they could mint a 1oz, $1silver coin and sell it for 50 times what its currency value was.

So what about all those 90% silver coins that are still out there? Well, they are still out there for the most part. And they are valuable.. Now, remember they aren’t .999 pure silver like the invest grade silver I was talking about earlier. The junk silver coins are .900 pure silver, the rest is copper. And since the silver content is lower, the value is lower. Here is a chart of how much silver each coin contains –

Silver Dollar  (pre-1936)                   : .77 – .78 (troy ounces)
Silver Half-Dollar (1964 and earlier) : .3617 (troy ounces)
Silver Quarter   (1964 and earlier)   : .1808 (troy ounces)
Silver Dime (1964 and earlier)         : .0723  (troy ounces)

But, it is still silver!! You, as John did, might ask, “Why buy ‘junk silver’ when you can buy good silver?”

Valid question and there are a couple of reasons:

  1. Junk silver coins are already broken down in dollar, half-dollar, quarter and dime denominations. That makes it really easy to identify sub-1oz amounts. When the value of your trade/barter/deal needs a specific value in silver, using coins (junk silver) makes it easy to identify that exact amount. I can imagine that post-apocalypse folks identifying values in “silver dimes” as a standard valuation.
  2. Investment grade silver usually carries a hefty premium over the spot price of silver. However, junk silver coins can be bought below spot if you are watchful. What I am referring to is eBay. Search for eBay auctions that are for junk silver coins. Look for two kinds of auctions; 1) auctions that end at weird times like 2am on a Weds, 2) odd combinations of coins like 2 quarters, 10 dimes and a half-dollar. These auctions are often time passed over by the folks trying to scoop up larger quantities and who are a little more professional in their approach to buying silver. The “odd time” eliminates a lot of the folks that want to bid right at the end to avoid driving the price up. And that should be a great hint for you as well; wait until the very last couple of seconds before submitting your bid. That avoids running up the bids. But make sure you submit your “maximum” amount the first time. eBay will only run it up to your maximum but also, only enough to win the auction. So you might get it well below your maximum bid. I would go with spot price as my maximum bid.

So there you have my case for buying junk silver. Now, remember that I have also bought investment grade silver as well. I think there is a time and place for each. The investment grade stuff is for protecting my retirement. It is the hedge against inflation or the dollar getting ruined. Yes, it will be very useful during grid-down and I explain all of that in the article “Silver & Gold…..Really?”

I hope that answers your questions and explains my philosophy on junk silver.

One interesting little side-note: if you look at silver dimes they are supposed to have a serrated edge to them. There was a time that some folks would scrape the serrated edges off the dimes and collect the silver from those scrapings. And then continue to spend the dime when they were used as coinage. In today’s world I think there are some folks who still think they can get away with it. So when buying silver coins look closely at the edges to make sure they are intact and no one is trying to sell you a less than full-weight, intact coin.

 

 

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Power, Politicians, Crushing People…and “Prepping” – Part 2

money and power go to the government at the expense of the peoplenote: this article originally appeared in March, 2015, edited July 2019

This is Part #2 of a two part series of posts about money & power, how it affects us now and, more importantly, how it will affect us in the future. And then the absolute most important part of this series, how “prepping” can mitigate the affects of “money & power” used against us.

In Part #1 (appeared 2 days ago on the 27th) I reviewed the last seven decades and how we slipped into bondage with the government as our master. I also showed how each President since Kennedy affected out country and who the real power was/is behind the curtain. I made it clear that

With money you can buy power (political power)

With money you can buy power.
With power you can acquire money.

“money & power” is the control of this country and how it has eliminated virtually all of our now extinct rights, freedoms and liberties over time.

Lets move on to the next installment of “money and power” – the relationship between the two is interesting.

The Ruling Class (our government, all layers of government) want virtually all of both money & power, leaving just enough to allow us to survive. Even giving us the allusion of thriving. Yes, that sounds diabolical and extremely conspiratorial. But I challenge you this, prove me wrong! Show me the actions of government at any level in the United States that isn’t sucking power away from individuals and taking it unto itself. Better yet, show me a single instance where the Executive or Legislative branches of the federal government is truly reinforcing an individual’s rights or liberties in any meaningful way!

In America today, the only people that will benefit from any government action do so at a price that others pay. So what little government gives back to one group of people (usually money) belongs to another people group of people, NOT the government. The government in America today, at all levels, only takes power, it never gives power. Why?

Because, “Power cannot be created or destroyed, it can only be moved from owner to another.”Government transfers wealth from those that earned it to those that don't deserve it.

Government cannot create power, but it can take power or move power from one group of people but only at the expense of that group. But even the ability of transferring power is against God-given natural rights. In America, government have always seized power and authority from the people, or bought it. It doesn’t give power back to its owners…the people.

Remember the saying you probably heard at some point in your life, “money is the root of all evil” or some variation of it? The truth is, the statement is far more accurate than most would think. But to me it is only half right. The half that is missing is “power.” So changing the saying slightly, “Power and money is the root of all evil!” now becomes absolutely true, yes?

Well, not really. Yeah, it sounded as if I was leading you down that path to say “yes”, but I am not done with that concept of money and power just yet. To continue to refine the saying I would have to ask, “can money and power be good, or at least can it be used for good?” I think anyone who has any intelligence would have to say “yes” to that question. So “money & power” by itself is not evil. However, how that money and power is used makes the outcome evil or good.

Yes, I make a clear distinction between good and evil. For me, anything that goes against God’s plan for us as individuals is evil. Conversely, anything that supports God’s plan for us is good.

Let us test that…

We know that God gave man agency, the right to choose what we do. Granted, there are consequences to doing evil (i.e. murder) but God does not force us to not murder. However, He teaches us the principle that it is wrong. And therein is the difference – “force.” When we are compelled into doing something we lose our agency. When we are free to choose, we enjoy or suffer the consequences of those decisions that comes from exercising our agency. Example: If we drive recklessly and cause harm or damage we should be held accountable for those actions based on the choice that we made top drive recklessly. Hence, we cause damage or harm we compensate those that were harmed by our actions/choices. However, if we drive recklessly and cause no damage or harm to anyone, what difference does it make to anyone?

Traffic statutes today are long, complicated and tedious. They are designed to compel us into certain types of behavior. The authorities use these statutes to control our behavior (i.e. reduce the ability to choose) regardless of any harm or damage actually being done to someone. Statistics would make a plea that traffic laws prevent accidents, thus saving lives and reducing property damage. This argument is completely and utterly false. If their primary concern was saving lives and reducing property damage they would prosecute drunk drivers to the fullest extent of the law. Or, they would advocate for the total elimination of cars since they represent and average 50,000 deaths per year in America.

Notice statists (those people who love government and use it to control people) will create statute after DUI Checkpoint Police State money makerstature to control behavior but are extremely lax in holding people accountable for their actions. And here is just one example of how that is done – there are large numbers of laws on the books to control people and their driving habits. There are even mandated DUI checkpoints wherein people are subjected to questioning, DUI Checkpoint - anti-constitutional bill or rights breaking police state toolsearches and mandatory sobriety testing; all without “probable cause” required by the Constitution. These mandatory checks even include forced blood draws as you are restrained, should you object to the field sobriety test.

But how many times have you heard one convicted drunk driver after another let off with a light, or no, sentence who then drinks and drives again killing someone? Exactly! There are plenty of “behavior control” laws but weak “enforcement” laws. Why is that do you think?

To answer that question we will subject the scenario mentioned above to the “money & power” test. We will take the easiest test first – power. When our DUI checkpoint police state tool to violate a persons rightsnon-harmful activity is controlled by the government does power move to the individual person, or is it taken from the person?

Example: A DUI checkpoint – without due process of law a large number of people are stopped against their will. They are questioned by law enforcement officers and often forced to submit to a variety of sobriety tests, including the potential for an invasive blood draw. So which way does the “power” flow? To the person…or to the government?

Let’s now touch on the money aspect. If a person is stopped for DUI what happens? Regardless of anything else, they are fined. And that money goes to a government entity. If the defendant seeks legal defense then money flows to lawyers. Regardless of the outcome of the case the legal system gains monetarily from the alleged DUI infraction.

Then with a DUI conviction on his drivers record insurance companies charge more for car insurance. And who issues business licenses to insurance companies? Correct, government agencies charge insurance companies for the right to conduct business in their states as well as charging a variety of other taxes including, in many cases, corporate income tax.Overtime Pay is the motivation for LEOs at DUI checkpoints

And interestingly enough…DUI is seldom discovered at DUI checkpoints; normally, it is expired insurance cards, expired drivers license, or out of date vehicle registration. All of which take money from the individual push it into the government bank accounts.

And finally, why are law enforcement offices so supportive of DUI checkpoints? Overtime Pay! Yup, money.

Federal government bribes cops to follow orders.And where does the money come from to pay that overtime to individual officers? The federal government.

The federal government sends billions and billions of dollars per year to local police departments. And why do you think they do that? In the old days they would call it what?

So regardless of any damage or harm done by the driver, power and money flow directly and indirectly from the individual to the government or government employees.

Apply that same test to every aspect of government intrusion in our lives. And I mean every single aspect. Now, be ready to answer a simple question.

Here’s the question –

Are you OK with this kind government action, taking of money and power from the individual by the government in every aspect of our lives?

President Andrew Jackson money and power concentrated in government.

Remember, power is neither created or destroyed. Power exists in only one spot at a time; either it rests with an individual or it rests with the government. And the individual must freely give it up; or, conversely, a government entity must take by force the power from the individual.

Let’s make the test even simpler. Do you trust individuals more than the government? Or, do you trust the government more than individuals? Who is easier to deal with in a dispute, an individual or a massive bureaucratic government?

So you really want to know what this has to do with “prepping” and such?

Well, it goes first to “mind set”; the mental capacity to understand what you are up against as your prepare for emergencies, disasters, or grid-down.Support Bill of Rights Second 2nd Amendment to the Constitution for gun ownership

Let me really test your “statist quotient“. Do you support the Second Amendment in the Bill of Rights? Do you?

OK, great! Please answer the following questions:gun control violates the Bill of Rights and loved by statists

  1. Federal regulations controlling civilians owning automatic weapons are appropriate?
  2. Federal law prohibiting convicted felons from owning guns is the right thing?
  3. Federal law prohibiting guns being sold online or shipped in the mail make perfect sense?
  4. Federal law requiring the 4473 form to be completed and FBI background checks just makes sense?
  5. Federal law preventing kids under the age of 18 from buying guns is needed for public safety reasons?
  6. Banning of ‘bumpstocks” or “slide fire” accessories is OK with me?

Well…the Second Amendment to the Constitution contained in the Bill of Rights states,

“…the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

If you answered “yes” to or agreed with, any of the six questions above then you do NOT support the Constitution and you Statist support big government and no individual rights and freedoms.are a statist.

Yeah, you may not like it, but you are. Yes, you can argue it and debate it all you want, but the wording in the Second Amendment of the Bill of Rights is clear, perfectly clear. And you either support it or you don’t.

As soon as you start coming up with reasons to restrict gun ownership or gun purchasing then you become a big-government statist.

So why are there gun laws?  Apply the “money & power” test to it.

The federal government makes huge money off regulating guns. They do so through the BATF via gun dealers. If you want to own an automatic weapon, you have to pay a huge fee to the government for them to give you that privilege. So the “money” test clearly shows that money flows from the individual to the government.

sometimes freedom is dangerous, but it is always preferable to safe slavery

Freedom or “safe” slavery?

Now test the “power” aspect. Does the individual currently have the power to do as they wish within Constitutional rights? “No” is the only answer to that question.

Let’s take felons first since they are prohibited by federal law from owning a gun. Why? The Second Amendment makes NO exception to prohibit felons owning guns. So some politician decided to take that power from felons.

Can a minor buy a gun or does federal law prohibit that? Answer – minors can not buy a gun based on federal law because some politician decided to take that power away from individuals.

Can the federal government deny a person the right to buy a gun?

Yes. Through the 4473 form the federal government can prevent a person from purchasing for virtually any reason, including a simple mistake on the form itself. So does power flow from the government to an individual or has the government seized power from the individual?

And why does the statist, via the government, want this particular power, gun ownership, to move away from the people, and to the government?  Our Founding Fathers addressed that subject:

Statism wants you to believe you to have permission to be free.Thomas Jefferson said – “The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.”

George Washington said – “A free people ought not only to be armed but disciplined…”

George Mason said – “To disarm the people is the most effectual way to enslave them.”

Noah Webster – “Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed, as they are in almost every country in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed, and constitute a force superior to any band of regular troops.”

Elbridge Gerry  – “What, Sir, is the use of a militia? It is to prevent the establishment of a standing army, the bane of liberty …. Whenever Governments mean to invade the rights and liberties of the people, they always attempt to destroy the militia, in order to raise an army upon their ruins.”

And why do you think they said those things?

Because they were all too familiar with the face of tyranny and its evil and its destructive power. Tyranny is not bottom-up…it is top-down from government against the people. Our Founding Fathers recognized the tyranny under British rule, opposed it, fought against it, some died fighting it, and they won freedom from it. They had no desire to allow tyranny to reign ever again in America.

That my friends is why the federal government promotes gun control, when they own the ballot box, there is only one last option to throw tyranny out. Now you understand why Progressives are such huge proponents of gun control, to preserve and promote power flowing to the government not to the individual. And Conservatives rarely object to those restrictions of gun ownership not being infringed.

Liberals, democrats. progressives, statists, communists, socialists support gun control and restrictions.Have I answered the “prepper” relationship question yet?

Let try this on you – applying it to any scenario where “preps” are needed, which way will the power be flowing?

Remember the terms “state of emergency”, “curfew”, “checkpoints”, “mandatory evacuations” to name just a few? Who loses power in these cases and who gains power?

Then there is the ultimate transfer of power, “martial law.” In this case, all power is moved to the government and the individual loses all their power, rights and liberties for as long as the government deems appropriate. And what is the outcome every time? Show me an example where the federal government seizes power, deprives rights and liberties to its citizens, and it turns out well.  And how do they control people under such a power grab?

They do it with a carrot and a stick. They promise food, hand out debit cards, open emergency shelters and pass FEMA teamout water. At what cost? You must do exactly as they say.

Do you want to depend on FEMA to take care of your family in times of need? The same government style bureaucrats that run the IRS?

Do you want that for you and your family when an emergency or disaster strikes? Or would you rather be self-sufficient? Or better yet, able to help out family, friends and community? You can only do that if you retain “power” within your situation. And you do that by NOT being dependent on what the government is offering.

The more power you retain to yourself, the ability to take care of you and your family, the less control the government has over you. And ask the people who were ever under total control of, at the mercy of, the federal government during any emergency or disaster. Ask them how did they do? How did it work out for them? Would they have avoided it if they could have?

FEMA disaster during Katrina

How did that worked out with FEMA during Katrina?

Now, let’s take the ultimate “grid-down” scenario; do you want to trust and to rely on the government to take care of your family? Would the government even have the capacity to do so?

Actually, let me ask a more fundamental question; what actions would the federal government take in the event of a “hard” grid-down? What policies would they implement?

Having a problem answering that question? Really? I doubt it.

Can you use the “power & money” test today in everyday life? Sure! Use it to test all things political, or anything related to the government. Simply look at who benefits in relation to the flow of money and the flow of power. Therein you will see who is the loser and who is the winner.

Net Neutrality is government police state control and lose of freedom for the individualExample: Net Neutrality.

Money: Through Net Neutrality the federal government is able, through the FCC, to charge any fee or tax to any aspect of the Internet industry just like they do phone and cable bills. Get out your cell phone bill and look at the extra charges on your bill levied by the government. So in the case of Net Neutrality the money flows from the individual and businesses to the federal government.

Power: Through Net Neutrality the federal government is able, through the FCC, to control and dictate to any Internet related company whatever policies they, the FCC, deems appropriate. The same is true for TV, radio, cable, and Ham licensing. They can control access, content, speed, and every other aspect now enjoyed by the individual person.

In the case of Net Neutrality both power and money flow from the individual to the government resulting in a huge loss of freedom, rights, and liberty for the individual. The government took control, again

As you prepare for emergencies, disasters and “grid-down” think about the way those scenarios might play out. Prepare yourself mentally on how to deal with it by understanding principles.

To better understand today’s political environment simply apply the “money & power” test against any law, policy, proposal, rule, or speech. Where does the money go?  Who gains the power? Answer those two questions and you will know the difference between good and evil.

money and power used by the federal government creates tyranny at the loss of rights and freedom.

money and power used by the federal government creates tyranny at the loss of rights and freedom. money and power used by the federal government creates tyranny at the loss of rights and freedom. money and power used by the federal government creates tyranny at the loss of rights and freedom.

 

 

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Power, Politicians, Crushing People…and “Prepping” – Part 1

Thomas Jefferson quote on power turns into tyranny.note: this article first appeared in March, 2015. Edited in July 2019.

Pretty dramatic title to this post but I assure you it is 100% accurate and timely. How does it apply to “prepping” for emergencies, disasters and grid-down? Well, that my friend is why you need to read both Part # & Part #2 articles. You won’t be disappointed. And you will be far better prepared because you will more fully understand human nature, albeit the darker side of human nature.President John F. Kennedy was a powerful politician from a powerful political criminal family

So let’s cover a little background first – I’m old. I can remember President Kennedy. Granted I was young at the time, but I remember my parents talking about him and I remember when he was killed. President Kennedy was seen by most as a strong leader with America’s best interest as a priority. While he might not have been a Progressive, but he was for sure part of the Ruling Class.

Ruling Class? Yeah, sorry, I should explain that term since I will be referring Ruling Class in America controls power through money and becomes powerfulto it regularly in this article. The “Ruling Class” are those people and families that have the real power in our country. Yes, the same could be said for the world; but for now I am just talking about our country. There are the old money families of the Ruling Class and new money members.

The new money are those individuals that have so much money that has been recently acquired that they simply “buy” their way into becoming part of the Ruling Class. But the old money members of the Ruling Class are the most powerful.

A few examples of Old Money Families (will include descendants with other family names) – Brzesinski, Bush, Carters, Cheneys, Clinton, Emanuel, Ford, Morgans, Rockefeller, Roosevelts, Rothschild, Udall, Vanderbilt.

A few examples of New Money Families (will include descendants and relatives with other family names) – Allen, Bloomberg, Gates, Koch, Lewis, Louis-Dreyfus, Murdoch, Pew, Soros, Zukerberg.President Lyndon B. Johnson power Progressive welfare pimp

After liberal Kennedy was killed then came President Johnson. He was an extreme Progressive. He loved both war and Marxism/Socialism. He excelled at both. He was responsible for the huge increase in social programs designed to establish and maintain a permanent welfare class of people. The program was called The Great Society. A greater implementation of socialism in America hadn’t been seen since the introduction of massive socialist programs during the FDR years.

President Nixon Progressive power player and corruptThen came Nixon. Nixon was an interesting guy, a Progressive and globalist, but also inept and void of morals on a personal level. He was the first president that I really paid attention to, that I was “politically aware” of. He failed our country with the Watergate Scandal. Interesting how minor in nature the Watergate Scandal was compared to later presidents. But the country was full of anger, hate and pent-up frustration over the Vietnam War; Nixon bore the brunt of all it…deservedly so.

President Gerald Ford was ex-CIA power progressive croniePresident Ford was a complete waste of time. His sole purpose was to pardon Nixon and then fade away into history. He was an utter waste as a president. However, he established a new type of person to move into high office, established career government officials from intelligence community (i.e. CIA dark spook types) and a globalist as well.

President Carter a Progressive extremist and anti-semticWhen Jimmy Carter was elected president I knew the country was in serious trouble. Jimmy Carter comes across as this kindly gentle grandfather. But he is anything but that. He is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. He absolutely hates anything related to Jews, loves everything Muslim and he is a raging Progressive and globalist. His four years as president was almost enough to destroy America. And there is absolutely ZERO doubt in my mind that his mission was to turn America into a third-world country. He nearly succeeded.

President Ronald Reagan loved America and was a conservative, saved America from jimmy carter.Just when the country was about to collapse, America elected Ronald Reagan. If you weren’t alive back then you have no idea just how much Reagan meant to our country. He was the last remaining Reagan said "government is not the solution to our problem. government is the problem."hope to turn America around from certain destruction. And he did. Reagan pointed out the evils of government and how we could choose a great America or a dark and destructive America. He gave us a pretty decent America for 8 years. He was not perfect and wasn’t able to do all that was needed, or promised, but he opened many people’s eyes to the utter evils of Progressivism and globalism. I was one of those people that woke up. When he said, “Government is not the solution to the problem. Government is the problem!” made me realize for the first time in my life exactly where this country was headed, why, and how disastrous it would be when we arrived…if we didn’t change course.President H.W. Bush another progressive president. A wolf in sheep's clothing.

Then America got suckered into electing George H. W. Bush. There was great hope that he would continue resurrecting of America through Constitutional and conservative principles. Unfortunately Bush was a liar and just another Progressive and globalist. Bush came from an “old money” family that was establishing itself as a family political dynasty. Bush came up through the political ranks and served as the Director of the CIA as did President Ford. That should have been the clue for American voters. He was nothing more than a career political lusting for power and wealth…establishing a political dynasty.

President Bill Clinton a rabid corrupt progressive, impeached, criminal sold out americaThen the country was ready for a change and wanted someone young; Bill Clinton was elected. Clinton is a dedicated hardcore Progressive/globalist and the latest version of leadership evil. He was void of any morals or ethics. He lived his life as a hedonist without any regard for his family or his country. He was the ultimate politician concerned with only three things; power, money, and feeding his debauchery. Clinton was able to sell out America from the groundwork that Bush had started. Clinton had the very rare honor of being one of only two U.S. presidents to ever be impeached.

President George Bush another progressive neo-con. a wolf in sheep's lothing taking away individual rights, freedoms and liberty.People got tired of Clinton’s style of immorality and decadence and wanted someone with some morals. America elected George W. Bush. On the surface George W. Bush seemed like another Ronald Reagan, someone that could steer America away from the destruction that Clinton had caused. Few knew just how Progressive Bush was and how much he loved war as a globalist. When 9/11 struck, the massive Progressive machine saw a perfect opportunity to move against America. A series of laws that included the Patriot Act and Patriot Act under president bush took away rights, freedoms and liberty in teh name of securityExecutive Orders eliminated many of our Constitutional rights. The NDAA continued a relentless onslaught against the Constitution and allowed the federal government massive unilateral authority over Americans without the protection of the Bill of Rights or the rule of law. The Constitution was on life-support under Bush #2. As Bush concluded his presidency a financial crisis began that looked as if it would rival that of the Great Depression. Bush, along with his Progressive cronies, moved against America implementing a financial “bailout” that moved massive amounts of wealth from the average person to the hands of the ruling class.

President Barak Husein Obama is left-wing extremist radical tool of the progressivesThen the darkest days of America struck; Barak Hussein Obama was elected. Obama is the ultimate extremist Progressive and globalist. His elitist anti-American beliefs run deep. His abject hatred of the Constitution and our founding principles are evident in everything he does. His socialist/marxist beliefs are President Obama is transforming American into a totalitarian state.even more socialist/marist in nature than President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s. Obama wants nothing less than the destruction of America as a Constitutional Republic and transforming it into a Progressive totalitarian utopia. He was well on his way before his 8 years were up..

What does this trip down memory lane have to do with “prepping”???? Please be patient, I need to make my case and that takes background information to get the whole picture.

So what happened during the 54 years of presidents that I just reviewed?

A massive, history making, power shift took place. More accurately, a massive power shift accelerated. Power was moved from the individual to the government. I use the term “accelerated” because it actually started long before President Kennedy…around the turn of the century when the Progressive movement really started and propaganda (public relations) was born.

Albert Einstein gave us an eternal truth “Energy cannot be created or destroyed, it can only be changed from one form to another.” I would like to modify that universal law with your permission. “Power cannot be created or destroyed, it can only be changed from one form to another.” But I don’t speak of “power” in the sense of physics or thermal dynamics; I speak of it in terms of politics and government.

When it comes to politics and government power can only exist in one place at a time. When it comes to an issue, either an individual has power, or the government has power. It is absolutely impossible for both to have it equally.

Let me explain…

According to our Founding Fathers, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and a long list of people dating back America's Founding Fathers wanted to prevent tyranny multiple-hundreds of years…all “rights” come from God. Hence the terms “God-given rights”, “inalienable rights” and “natural rights” was the foundation of our Constitutional Republic here in the United States. So the “power” comes from God and was placed in the hands of the people according to all the great minds of the last 400 years or more. As a Christian I know that to be true; God gave us certain rights. While this is not a discourse in natural rights, it is understood that people have the right to; defend themselves, own property, pursue their life’s ambitions, and to do so without the interference Natural Rights are god-given rights to individuals not governmentsof government. The caveat to that is that a person is entitled to do so as long as their exercise of natural rights doesn’t impinge on another person’s exercise of their natural rights.

So the very basics of natural rights for the last 400+ years has been that power originates from God, rests in the hands of the individual, and government may receive power only from the consent of the people.

In most societies people delegate some of that power to different levels of government for convenience; but never relinquish it. Our Constitution and associated Bill of Rights spells out those limited instances where the people delegate a restricted amount of power to government. But most of the Constitution and Bill of Rights is a document outlining the restrictions placed on government exercising power against people. Why? Because our Founding Fathers lived under tyranny and wanted to ensure that America didn’t suffer that same fate again. So from God our rights are given to us and the Constitution ensures it stays that way.

Unfortunately it is the nature of most men to desire control over others; and government is a perfect mechanism to do so.

We have seen over the last 200 years a gradual shift of power from the individual to the government. And I speak of government at all levels. Since the advent of Progressivism (simply a Communism/Socialism version of Liberalism on a global level) in the late 1800’s a shift of Liberalism Progressivism socialism communismpower has taken place from the individual to government has accelerated dramatically. Today we see ourselves, as individuals, at the mercy of multiple layers of government. We have virtually no true freedoms & rights left, even the basics of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” that was outlined in the Constitution are quickly evaporating.

The basic tenant of Progressivism is that a certain group of elitist people (i.e. the Ruling Class) knows what is best for the masses. And then they impose that agenda by force on everyone through the power of the government.

A case could be made that Progressives originally had a well-intentioned objective, “to cure the ills from the industrial revolution.” But in reality Progressivism is nothing more than a massive attempt to shift power to a very small ruling class of people. And those elites “would set America right because they knew what was best for all Americans.” However, that meant they had to force it upon Americans because individuals had to be deprived of their Tryanny can come from good intentions.natural rights to enable the government to gain enough power. And that began the shift of power from the individual to the layers of governments. All in the name of good intentions, but a steady march towards authoritarianism.

One of the the first true large-scale shifts of basic power came under President Franklin D. Roosevelt when he managed to create situations where individuals became dependent on government money. The next large-scale power shift came under President Lyndon B. Johnson when his “Great Society” created the permanent welfare class of people in the U.S. who were dependent on the federal government for virtually everything. And those moves ensured a huge permanent voting block for Democrats because the welfare class would always vote for more handouts, and the Democrats were always ready to do just that.

Once the individual was significantly subjugated about mid-1990’s, another massive shift of power was well underway, and it was accelerating with each passing year. That power shift consisted of moving power from the local levels of government (i.e. cities, counties, and states) to the federal government. As of early 2015 that shift of power is nearly complete. Meaning? The federal government has consolidated virtually all power unto itself. Where the federal government lacks statutory power, it creates monetary power. Simply put, whatever power the federal government has not been able to legislate away from lower levels of government it has bought.Money and Power - William Cobbett

And therein lays the basis of today’s world – money and power.

Yes, money and power.Money and Power - Ayn Rand

 

 

 

In Part #2 (day after tomorrow) I will continue to explain how all this fits together and most importantly, I will explain how “prepping” can be the answer to arresting the effect of “money & power” on you and your family.

 

 

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I’ve been thinking… (February 2016)

What IsFor over a month now I’ve been working extra hard on writing preparedness articles. I love the way they are coming along. But, one question keeps coming back to me…

“What is the most important skill or trait for a prepper?”

Then it changed into…

“What is the most important thing for prepping?”

Either way you look at it, I was trying really hard to answer both of those questions. But, I kept coming up empty handed.

Well, that’s not entirely true…I kept coming up with a long list of “most important.”  I had a hard time accepting that I couldn’t identify the most important anything for preppers. I still don’t have a good single answer.

I could always fall back on Situational Awareness (SA). I mean the case for SA is so easy to make. You have to be aware of what is going on around you…before and during an incident. Otherwise, you will either miss that an incident is about to happen, thus failing to properly prepare and respond. Or, you will miss something important during an incident and respond incorrectly or not at all. And of course, missing something important can easily be fatal, especially in the most dangerous, complex, and stressful of incidents.

Then I could make a case that without the skill(s) to deal with the “something important” it doesn’t matter how easily you recognized that something was happening. So, skill is just as important, maybe more so, than SA.

But what about gear? If you see an incident about to occur, that means you have good SA. If you then know what you should do, and are trained to do it, even better. That shows you have a good skill base. But, what if you don’t have any gear or equipment to make good on all your great skills and training?

You know what I am talking about. What if you need to defend yourself against a mob and have no weapon? What about if you need a fire for warmth but have no way to start one? What if you know you need water, know how to find it, and have absolutely nothing to use to filter the water? So, equipment and gear is also vital.

But, if you don’t have the “will” to survive you are just as defeated. Yeah, if you have the skills and gear but not the will to survive…then you are doomed.What Is most important for preppers

Then I could always reach for “community” to be most important thing because no one person or family can provide all the manpower, skills, gear, and equipment for success long term in a grid-down. That may well be true for a simple disaster as well.

So what is most important to preppers?

Humility is the most important thing for preppersWell, I think I might have figured it out this morning while was meditating on just this very subject…it is “humility.”

Are you completely let down?

I hope not, give me a chance to explain why this simple answer to an apparently complex question is the right answer.

Before I give you my definition of what humility is, let me share with you what I feel it is not.

I am sure we’ve all met that person, maybe in the mirror, they are the one that really knows-it-all…and let’s you know they know it all. They feel ultimately qualified to do just about everything. They can build a fire with toothpaste, shoot the eye out of a flea at 2000 yards, skin a deer in 20 seconds with only a dull rock, hike with a 100lb pack at 6mph for 2-weeks and no sleep, been a Navy SEAL, got bored then became a Delta operator, can predict the future about anything because they dream, and can heal anyone of any disease with only an oak leaf. And all that…before lunch!

So, we all know that person and I see them as arrogant.

When someone tries to teach them something…they already know it…and more…and better…and for longer. They want to teach the teacher. In other words…they are not teachable. And they normally “on up” anyone else’s story.

So, if that is my impression of the opposite of humility, then what exactly is humility?

To me, humility means a person is teachable. And if you are teachable, then that means whatever you don’t know, you are willing to listen and learn. And that is the most important thing for preppers…humility…the ability to be taught…to listen…to learn.

Before you go off the deep end on me thinking me some raving lunatic, give me a chance to throw a couple of other things at you.

Don’t confuse humility with weakness. Weakness means you can’t or won’t do something. You can be humble and still be very strong, in mind, body, spirit, and will. Weakness usually manifests itself in character. Any ability-based weakness can be overcome through training and experience. Weakness in “character” is tough, although not impossible, to overcome. In my opinion to overcome weakness in character you have to have both a strong desire, or motivation, to overcome that character weakness plus a mentor/example to lead you through it.

Being humble opens the door to many more opportunities. How many people do you know that actually like arrogant people? How many people do you know that enjoy being around arrogant people?

Most of the people that do enjoy the company of arrogant people are themselves arrogant as well. Politicians and their groupies come to mind. Watch how politicians treat each other, watch how their staff members fawn over them. So we know at least two groups of people who enjoy arrogance…politicians and their groupie flunkies.

I have had the opportunity to know some Special Forces guys, most of them were pretty humble on the outside as far as I could tell. Sure, they enjoyed cutting up and razing each other…and me. But, they were not arrogant in-your-face kind of guys bragging and whatnot. I could say the same thing for some of the best firefighters I have ever known…quiet, humble guys. But when the bell sounded, they were some of the best of the best in a fire situation.

Also, don’t confuse humility with lack of competency. Humble people can be very competent in many areas. But, they will also know where they can improve, or learn something entirely new. Just because you are good at hunting, doesn’t mean you are good at explosives. A humble person will know that, and they are more than willing to sit down and be taught what they previously didn’t know.

I guess a good way to look at it…they know that they don’t knowand they are willing to be taught.

What? Yeah, an arrogant person is more like…they don’t know that they don’t know...because they think they already know it all.

Hence, if you know that you don’t know…then you can learn what you don’t know. An arrogant person is more interested in impressing you with what they do know vs. admitting that they don’t know something. Especially if you know what they don’t know.

That was fun!!! I hope you followed me through all of that…I had fun writing it.

OK, back to “humility.”

Don’t confuse meekness with humility. A humble person will tend to not bloviate just for its own sake. When a subject comes up that they don’t know anything about they will usually sit there and learn. And they will ask questions and/or try to apply it to life’s situations to get advice. You try to feed them BS and they will call you out on it. And true, if they get lost they will almost assuredly speak up and ask for an explanation. This is especially true in a tactical situation. They are not meek…they want to know what is going on and they want to figure out their own knowledge gaps. That way they can learn, fill in the gaps, and help ensure mission success. A meek person simply fades away into the background, stays there, and is perfectly content with that condition. A humble person will work to learn and participate to their fullest.

By now you should have a really clear picture of what I feel is the most important “thing” for a prepper…humility. 

Humility in terms of a person willing to be taught. And that takes a great deal of confidence in knowing who you are, what you do know, and what you don’t know…but need to learn. You have to be willing to say to yourself, “I don’t know enough about that.” Once you can do that, you are then you are open to being taught and learning the very thing that was holding you back. As a prepper you can’t afford to be held back…that could be fatal to you and/or your family.

My friends, I encourage you to be teachable…to be humble. We can’t know everything, but we can learn anything. Don’t let your ego make you arrogant and unteachable. You can do anything, I am sure of that, and together we can surely handle any problem. Arrogance will only get in the way. Humility will pave the way for success.

Let us all be teachable…humble.

Humility-002

One Chance To Get It Right!

No Second Chancenote: first appeared in October 2015

I was gone all this last week and had a time to get my head away from all things “prepper” and just focus on my job. However, during one of the meetings on risk management the speaker used the slogan “you get one chance to get it right.” I sat there and it hit me like a lightning bolt.

That applies so much to what we do, or will do, as preppers that it isn’t even funny. Then all this stuff started streaming into my head that I just have to share some of it. Stuff that I think could make a huge difference in living or dying should the grid go down.

I am not talking about less dramatic situations such as disasters and emergencies, although it could apply to those as well. What I am going to talk about is specifically “grid-down” level events. However, it does in-fact apply to lesser events such as disasters and emergencies, just not as dramatically.

So getting back to the point of this post –

You have one chance to get it right.

So here is the backdrop, an event occurs that could cause substantial disruption in the daily life of a large number of all citizens. The event could be an attack from an external threat such as Iran, or it could be an event such as an implementation of martial law due to the reaction from a crackdown on alleged right-wing militia groups. And then there is the run-of-the-mill financial collapse or EMP strike. You get the idea. But remember, this concept can apply to any lesser emergency or disaster as well.

So the event occurs, now what do you do?

You get one chance to get it right. or you get it wrongWhy is that question even important? Because you may only have one chance to get your response to the grid-down event right.

Yes, I am serious, you may have only a single chance to react correctly to the situation. How so? Envision something as mundane as a roadblock. Do you try and successfully navigate the roadblock or do you seek another way home? What about if they are searching vehicles, do you have anything that will give you undo or fatal attention?

What about filling up your SUV’s fuel tank on the way home after the event occurred? That may be the last of the fuel for the foreseeable future. Did you or your wife fill up the bath tub and every other container in the house while the water was still flowing?

There are a thousand questions that I could prompt you with to see if you are making, or going to make, the right decisions when an event occurs. My point is not to make you feel as if you will fail, rather it is meant to prompt you with, “Do you have a plan?” And, “Will you faithfully follow the plan?”

So, when an event occurs will your one chance to get it right find you successful? I am going to say that for the majority of people the answer will be “no.” I am thinking that “no” will be the answer for about 75% of all the people in the United States. So I do pray that the situation will allow us all a second chance to get it right. But that may not be possible.

So what can you do to get it right the first time? Well, honestly you are doing just that right now. You are aware that it might be a failing of yours and you are learning about mitigating the unfortunate reaction of getting it wrong. So awareness and Plan for a dister, emergency or grid-down now.learning are the first two most important things; so, congratulations!

Next I firmly believe you must have a plan. It doesn’t need to be overly complicated but a plan is a necessity.

Then it is imperative that you be able to recognize what is happening SharkCanoeBEFORE it goes bad. And it doesn’t have to be a long time before, but just before to some adequate degree. That gives you time to take action while you still can. So Situational Awareness is absolutely needed. <read more about that by clicking here>

Then you must take some kind of action. That might sound kind of silly but I am dead serious. You would be surprised at the number of people that will not act during an emergency, even when their life depends on it. Don’t let that happen to you.

While you are waiting for the trigger event (or emergency/disaster) to occur use your time wisely, get training. Actually I should more accurately say, “Get the right training for the right people.” My wife will never be a sniper or a field medic, but training in first aid and getting her through a tactical carbine class was the “right” training. And please don’t forget the kids! Many kids have saved lives because they knew CPR.

Now let me share a few words on a phenomena that exists in some of the most risky professions in the world today. And that is –

“There are no new ways to screw-up, just new participants.”

And yes, I realize that could very well apply to life in general. But here I am talking about more fatality prevalent occupations. In the wildland firefighter business we have a few top contenders for the worst screw-ups that lead to fatalities, they are:Wildland Firefighter Deaths Chart

  1. Vehicle accidents
  2. Health/medical conditions
  3. Burn-overs
  4. Trees falling

Those four items account for about 90 – 95% of all wildland firefighter accidents resulting in deaths for the last 80 – 90 years. In the 1970’s we added aircraft accidents to the list but that category swings pretty substantially from year-to-year.

So we don’t really come up with new ways to kill people in my business, we just change participants. The same thing will be true for casualties during emergencies, disasters and especially “grid-down” events. Generally speaking, people will die from:Deaths During Grid-Down

  1. Violence
  2. Lack of medicine or medical care
  3. Inability to communicate
  4. No organization
  5. Dehydration
  6. Exposure (to a much lesser degree)
  7. Starving

Now what do you do? Well, to my simple way of thinking you mitigate the risks associated with each of those casualty inducing events. And that is “risk management” which I have written about. But for now just think, “How can I reduce the probability of those things occurring?” And, “If it does occur, how can I reduce the impact to my family?”do you have an Action Plan for grid-down emergencies disasters family

And that brings me right back to asking you the question, “Do you have a plan?”

Finally I want to touch on an interesting challenge I am going to hit you with, “Do you prepare with blinders on?”

Yeah, kinda of a weird question isn’t it? But it is meant to push you to think about what you are doing in regards to preparing for events that could challenge the safety and Bias can hurt your prepping preparednesswell-being of you and your family. Another way to ask the questions would be, “What bias is affecting your prepping?”

This is going to be a tough one to easily work on. Because as a prepper you have to make some assumptions on what to prepare for and you have your personal “history” affecting your judgement as well. But you must also challenge yourself by asking, “Am I locking myself into a single set of assumptions and missing something total different?”

Example: I know guys that are deep into prepping for EMP events. And they have cool Faraday Cages and such, but, they have neglected to buy and store heirloom seeds for planting a garden when their food storage runs out. Another guy I know has three generators of different sizes for use when the power grid goes out. And he stores one partially full 3-gallon can of gas without stabilizer in it. Then there are the folks who have large stores of food hid away. And not a single weapon to defend it all with.One Chance To Get It Right

So my final challenge to you is to remember that blinders (i.e. bias) can make you miss huge gaps in your prepping and make you screw-up that one chance to get it right.

 

 

 

 

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The Defender’s Creed

Minute Man ColonialThe Defender’s CreedMinute Man Modern

by John Farnam

I accept and understand that human predators exist. Criminal or terrorist, they take advantage of our civilized society to prey upon the weak. They represent evil and must be confronted and defeated.
I believe that self-defense is a moral imperative, and that illegitimate force and illegal violence must be met with righteous indignation and superior violence.
I will not rely on others for the security of myself, my family and my community. I proudly proclaim that I run with a like-minded pack. I do not amble through life with the mind-numbed herd.
I will train with my chosen weapons, maintain them and carry them in a condition of readiness at all times. I will be mentally prepared and physically equipped to effectively respond to an attack or emergency.
I will constantly test myself against realistic standards to discover my strengths and weaknesses. I will turn weakness into strength.
I will seek to learn new skills and techniques, and then teach what I have learned to other members of the pack. Be it with firearm or blade, empty hand or blunt object, I will hit my enemies hard, fast and true.
I will live a quiet and unobtrusive life, but I will develop and retain the capacity for swift and decisive violence. I recognize that I am the modern equivalent of the traditional Minuteman, and that I may be called to service at any time against heavily armed enemies. I will respond effectively.
I accept that I am a pariah among some of my countrymen, and a quaint anachronism to others.
I will not hold their ignorance against them.
I will win, or die trying.
I swear this creed before God, my family and my fellow citizens.
Sheep dog guarding and defending the flock of sheep.

Predators Beware – I am a sheepdog.