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Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF

 
Anonymous Coward
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09/25/2012 10:16 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
Foraging and potential areas of harvesting

Now, besides the National Forests which are huge by comparison and quite remote, in the event of a collapse, a lot of local people will know the public hunting and fishing areas. Many of these seasonally admit folks towards those endeavors, and I expect for a lot of loosey-goosey foraging to occur there. That would actually be poaching, yes? The same will be true on public parks, many of which can be quite large.

Most people don't live close to one of these, particularly the hunting areas. As such, it's quite a security issue to get there and back without transportation. Have you thought about how you're planning on carrying a deer back without a car or truck? In some cases you might get to the entrances of these places on a bike with a cart (peddling), then on foot to enter into the woods or meadows, make a kill, harvest it, carry it out, but what's to say that the bike will still be there? Of course that will be quite some distance, very heavy, very messy, and managing to get a fresh kill home without it being stolen...errr it seem implausible.

I can tell you that there's a diverse amount of species to be found way way off trails, but harvesting them and then returning back in a short period will not be possible. You could have a hunting trip and do lots of foraging based upon the time period and species being mature enough to take, but it's time consuming. Of course a few shots fired and anyone can triangulate upon your position too.

Of course everyone will attempt this. The areas will be overhunted, overforaged, and people will be accidentally shot by hunters with little experience shooting at anything that moves.

I would expect a lot of orchards and farmers to have a lot of poaching issues, and I shake my head at that outcome.
Anonymous Coward
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09/26/2012 01:08 PM
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Essential gardening plants: Squashes and Pumpkins

As self-reliant people, we want to replicate the efforts of wise people who went before us. They tried all kinds of methods, and the most successful of them, imparted their wisdom to their children and passed it on. We also want to do things that require little energy and achieve maximal energy, and if we make that a focus in general, then we achieve a net positive output. Then we try to do things consistently and then using all of these methods achieve a high level of abundance.

Two crops that were first introduced from Central America and Mexico are squashes and pumpkins. They were a mainstay of the First People's agricultural efforts. As any first year gardener knows at the end of the year, “Wow, squashes if picked frequently will produce an enormous amount of food.” They are very easy to grow. They are easy to harvest. They taste good and you can eat it all. You don't lose much to insects. The weather doesn't seem to greatly affect them. They provide good nutritional value.
[link to www.encyclopediaofalabama.org]

When the small squashes comes in and are six inches in length or so, if you pick the yellow straighneck or zucchini then, then the plant will willingly oblige and put out more, and just keep at it prolifically. But, if you don't pick them, then it will put its energy into that a few vegetables. Those will then get starchy and woody.

But pumpkins are really great. Now we're entering autumn and of course you'll see them in the supermarket. Pumpkins produce not only flesh to eat but valuable seeds. The seeds can be roasted and are remarkably full of protein, fat, carbs, and calories. It makes a delicious soup and can be blended with the squashes to. 100Grams of pumpkins provide half of the RDA for protein (of course in a normal diet).
[link to www.nutrition-and-you.com]
[link to www.allaboutpumpkins.com]

Both can be dried, and then you can live off of them all year long. The seeds of the pumpkin have great medicinal value. They are full of the amino acid tryptophan, and this induces sleep. In the absence of cow milk in the diet, something calming is very helpful.

Some cultures actually save the seeds and press out the oil, something that was discussed today on survival blog. That's probably a lot of trouble, but perhaps worth it as an alternative cooking oil, but all self-reliant people can roast and consume them for valuable calories and nutrition that stores very well.

Many of the monster pumpkins that are grown are actually squashes. We don't want one big pumpkin to carve or show off, we want as many as we can get to eat.
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
Parched corn

For those of you who do not know, there are two kinds of basic corn: sweet corn and field corn. Both are consumed by humans. The first usually eaten as ears or cut into kernels and frozen or canned. The latter is dried and the ground to make cornmeal or masa flour. Masa is the main ingredient in tortillas or in the "bread" of tamales.

The way that many First People ate corn was by dehydrating it to save it for the rest of the year, and then parching it. Here's some information on how to prepare that.
[link to www.utahpreppers.com]
[link to stealthsurvival.blogspot.com]
[link to www.preparingtosurvive.com]

As you see, Western Europeans explored the New World, and adopted parched corn for their supplies. It packs a huge amount of nutrition in a pound of grain, far exceeding wheat.

Doing this for a long period, it will wear on the enamel of your teeth and wear them down. We don't think about such things now, as our food is mostly tender, but the longer a food is cooked, and the ways in which it's cooked, alter the nutritional value gained.

So of course, they ground it with crude mortar and pestle devices. There's a little information about that in the 3rd link.

Most people like it. In a collapse, there is little doubt that eating field corn will become commonplace.
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09/26/2012 03:30 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
Corn Syrup

As self-reliant people, we cannot afford to ignore a source of calories. Because there are often period of time when we can't get enough carbohydrates, we must maximally extract energy in whatever form we can find. While this may seem controversial with corn syrup, that's pretty ridiculous for most people.

Yes, Americans consume fast quantities of it. A single soda is loaded with tablespoon after tablespoon of it. But, in a collapse, we must find sugar of some sort to boost energy. Since organized tribes post-collapse will grow sweet and field corn, we will be necessity be picking the ears, then letting the stalks stay up, maximize the sugar content in their stalks, then extract the syrup. In this way, nothing is wasted versus only getting an ear of corn.

Yes, if you have many disease states then sure, corn syrup is not for you. However, if you're starving to death, don't tell me that you won't eat it.

You're going to leave the stalks up 20 days after you harvest the ears. Now scrape out the inner pith and mix with water and cook on a very low heat. It'll form a syrup, and based upon how much pith is in it, the sweetness will vary. You're not going to have loads and loads of this, but it will serve as a way to boost calories, much as maple syrup did.

People without adequate sugar have very low energy. The body must have sugar for blood glucose levels. In a survival situation, you have a very difficult time finding ways to restore glycogen to muscles and your liver as your body is catabolizing itself to maintain this.
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09/26/2012 03:41 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
Cooking tortillas



Tortillas will be one of the most common breads you will be making. We want breads that are thin flatbreads because they are far easier to cook, faster to prepare, and foods can be wrapped in them for variety.

Your baking powder or baking soda will run out, and so you'll be mixing in a little ash from hard wood fires. Likewise when the corn is dried and ground into flour, a little wood ash is mixed in. By doing that, it releases vitamins to prevent pellagra. Fat of course will come from grease from animals mostly, but sometimes we can press oils from some seeds or certain sunflowers or soybeans or whatever.

It's not hard, and by cooking quickly on a rocket stove, then we minimize wasting wood for cooking versus long baking loaves.
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09/27/2012 03:33 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
Finding Natural Yeast Sources



Some time back, I posted a video from a Japanese website. A woman there was interested to create breads from natural yeast sources. She became well known for it, and was interviewed for a cooking program. Her method is precisely like the form found at the link below.
[link to www.tacticalintelligence.net]

In this link they use apples, in her version she used raisins. Raisins produced the most “fizzing action” so it was assumed that due to the higher fermentation that more yeast was present. That's a good link by the way, and kudos to the writers of that article.

I know raisins work. Naturally this is the basis for making wine. Yeasts from certain regions in France are known to interact with the grapes grown there, and due to this difference plus the style of making the wine, you get a different tasting wine. I guess that there could be a discernible taste difference in a trained chef's tongue to detect the differences in say the yeast produced for bread in Missouri versus Georgia.

Using raisins has been a tried and true method in Europe. I found a video from Austria that uses this method to make yeast bread too. Regardless as the tactical intelligence article discusses, any fruit or grain that has some sugar in it will interact with the wild yeasts in the air.



That method is utilized by incarcerated people to make jailhouse wine called Pruno. They take whatever fruit/grain/vegetables they can find, say ketchup, or like the pioneers...corn stalks...and use that to get an additional harvest of ethanol.



Now Peace Corp volunteers take old knowledge from pioneer skills and combine that with modern techniques and teach those methods in 3rd world nations in order to improve their lives. They might help with wells, or sanitation or making some chemical from local ingredients to improve a mortar so they can build stronger wall.

But they also might be in a country where it might be frowned upon to drink or purchase ethanol. So if they want to do that, they might have to make it themselves. A common way is to make raisin wine since they ferment consistently, and the ingredients are so simple to find anywhere.


Three parts to it. You don't need to add the yeast. It will naturally be acquired from the air.
[link to www.grouprecipes.com]

The point is that as self-reliant people, we want to find natural sources to harvest from, and by doing so acquire yeast to use for baking, making wine, making vinegar, etc.

Raisin and persimmon and maple wine were the most common fermented beverages among the pioneers. The Apaches made Tizwin from corn but it was very tame. Of course apple jack was made from pressed apples made into cider which shortly thereafter "turned" or fermented into apple jack. Letting it go longer will produce vinegar. Since all of that is useful, we end up with something we can use at each stage, and finally for pickling and extending the harvest.
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09/28/2012 03:53 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
Vital Earth Skills: Collecting clay and making pots

I have read all kinds of methods for making clay pots, but few articles or videos on First People techniques or bushcraft explain about the clay themselves. It's actually very important to understand, because if you chose good clay, then it will fire better, and you'll have less breakage, and so, let's begin with that.

Clay is a component of soil. We don't know much, but it appears that some clay is self-replicating, almost demonstrating a form of life. Interesting isn't it, because that appears in myths and spiritual systems in many cultures.

Because all soils contains some clay, some are better than others. Usually what happens is because of drainage or lack of drainage, water will pool, and wash out the loam and humus of soil and thins it on the surface. The loam is the rich wonderful soil at the top six inches. The humus is often on the very top, the debris of small natural items that breakdown and then slowly embedded in loam. Rain falls, and as it does all of the harder soil underneath prevents the loam which is less dense to penetrate deeper, and so that layer below the loam l has a higher clay component from the washing of rainfall.

Some soils along river plains will have more clay. More flooding will wash away loam, and so river banks have lots of clay. If we're foolish, or don't know what to do, then we'll look for clay by digging around randomly. We might happen upon a yellow or red clay, sometimes a white clay and then use that. Sometimes the Source just gives a deposit of clay in a meadow or forest, often from a flash flood, and if we use our sense of the Green then we can find it by perceiving its location. This is not common at all for a greenhorn. It would be a blessing regardless.

A far superior way is discussed in the first video. You wash it! What a revolutionary idea, huh? You use the water's natural effect to separate the soil into component layers, and then what settles in the bottom is mostly clay, and therefore precisely what we desire.

If you don't do this, you'll have some sand in it, and sand creates spacers where the clay cannot adhere to itself, and so eventual breakage. Sand is added to clay soil to make it easier to grow crops since you can then plow and make the soil more friable. Looking under the microscope, clay looks exactly like dinner plates stacked. The sand adds more spacers, and so makes it break up, and we don't want any for clay pot material, but we want some for growing crops so the seeds can sprout through it, make roots, drain water, etc. Sand doesn't float, but some will swish out as you wash it.

Almost always you will use the rope clay method and build up layers quickly, but it you don't keep the clay pot-in-process wet, then it will dry at different rates and then potentially break under firing.

Watch these videos to see both how to wash the clay and concentrate it, then follow with the rope clay method to form it into layers and then create a pot. If you had a potter's wheel moving at a uniform speed and perhaps some tools or a sensitive hand, then you smooth the clay better to form thicknesses and mold the clay.




There are several parts of the clay series at both channels and very good bushcraft information on a variety of topics.
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09/28/2012 04:17 PM
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You might end up firing the clay multiple times to manage its strength. Note the cover to create an oven and using coals since the temperature will be more uniform.

Whatever you end up making will be misshapen since you don't have a potter's wheel. Taking your time to form good clay will really help, however once you begin, if you take your time then the clay dries and cracks. Then you'll introduce weak places that will not fire well and crack or you finish and it will crack under the weight of liquid placed within.
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09/28/2012 04:22 PM
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The bigger the size of the pot, the more chances for it to chip or crack under the process of making it or during the firing process. While this video doesn't explain the process, it does show that not only can you make a simple small pot, but also more complex ones and ones with larger volumes. Note variations on firing techniques.
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09/28/2012 04:29 PM
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This one describes different indirect heat methods for firing it after ensuring that the pots have dried first then using the water heated within to achieve firing too.

Imagine if you had welder's gloves as I mentioned before. Welders gloves are very helpful survival preps for handling very hot objects since they come up high on you wrists to the forearm. Burns could often fester in the wild so protection will preserve life.
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
Using the river

People had limited options when they moved their families from the urban to the wilderness areas. Sure some people used covered wagons, that's the most common image I'll bet you imagine, but many also used flatboats and keelboats. The utilized the speed of a navigable river to use speed to move relatively quickly but also carry more items down river.

Flatboats were not very steerable, but they could carry a lot of tools, supplies, people, animals, etc. They didn't move fast at all, and were prone to river pirates as a result. There's no place to go if you're plodding along a river and short fast maneuverable canoes with ranged weapons come along side and then it's hand-to-hand. Then the pirates made off with womenfolk and a huge haul of goods. Some families today are descendants of them if you dig around in their skeleton closets. Other pirates whole growing clans were wiped out (including the captives and subsequent children) by incensed townsfolk and survivors who'd formed posses.
[link to mjcpl.org]
[link to www.essortment.com]

Keelboats used poles and bigger crews to steers the rivers. Many had very large cargo holds and actually had cannon.
[link to www.greatriverroad.com]

It's very possible that smart folks might use the lesser considered routes of rivers to extricate themselves from a urban area by small watercraft. Many are available like pontoon boats, canoes, rowboats, john boats, etc. Of course using the river's current and stealth, one could quietly slip away, then fire up engines as long as possible and move great distances. But then one would have to be very prepared on what to do, precisely planning the escape, and then where's the final destination and how to then move all the cargo?

I think it's a doable plan versus taking a car that can get tied up in traffic. It's something to consider carefully in any event as others may use the same strategy as Big and Little Harp did so long ago. Inevitably post-collapse, the first trade networks will again happen as river traffic.
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09/28/2012 05:18 PM
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Crossing a River

A lot of soldiers have been killed at river crossings. It's a very dangerous spot for the offensive squad trying to take the opposite beach.

First, all the weapons and gear must be secured. Your boots are going to get wet, and this can kill you in winter as the hypothermia will occur from being wet, and then walking in wet boots and then frostbite and exposure. Since you could die of this in late autumn, that means fording a river is always possible somewhere along the way, and river sandals helpful to change into. Then once across, you change into your regular boots and get out other gear as needed.

It's very hard to fight from chest deep water and defend yourself with zero cover and only the volume of water deflecting the trajectory of bullets. You're very slowly moving across and trying to pull yourself up sometimes on to a bank on the opposite side and heavier from the soaked clothing and gear.
The exertion when already tired and then meeting opposition could mean death.

Since the “defenders” are sitting pretty from cover and can easily maneuver, you're screwed. What's worse is most likely there's a cross fire set up such that they'll fire upon you from multiple directions and you tribe is full rout and confused.

Lots of people illegally cross over rivers into the US. They use simple inflatables to help them since they're weighted down with supplies. They may have very common items like closed containers which they grip as floaties and then ditch them on the other side. Maybe they use a bunch of clustered branches tied with a rope and kick with their legs to propel themselves and steer a bit.

River crossings require planning. No one just crosses. You mentally measure the terrain, depth, handholds, useful items to leap on to as you cross. Who can make it easiest and cross over unaided? Who might string up a line to help others cross? Who can pair off together to inch across as a team?

If moving across a river in little jumps, then a tribe using a canoe can go from one temporary river camp to another by beaching their craft and setting up in areas where there are coves. These often have rich wildlife, fish, meadows, tree cover and hence firewood and driftwood. You can easily see old firepits along the way.

Sometimes you might be crossing by land and the path ends due to natural boundaries. Then you cross across the river and walk and then cross back to get around the obstacle. It might be to your advantage to cross a river, or make it appear so, when being pursued, then double back.

Imagine the difficulties of fording a river with multiple children. You get the most responsible across, then go back again for another, and then finally a spouse. Each one left on either side is very vulnerable and you in the middle of the river. Drownings happened often as people migrated. Lots of people fell out in fast flowing circumstances.

People don't know how to step onto a watercraft and the forward momentum make the craft move forward and they fall in. People lean to one side and this makes steering rough (and the j-stroke important to compensate). People relax and lose vigilance while they admire the scenery. People get chilled by being wet and from the wind. Traveling on the river means lots of planning.
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
River Hydraulics
[link to watchman2012.files.wordpress.com]

Sometimes on a river, it picks up speed and creates rapids. These happen as a result of the natural deposits of rock and sediment as the water channels downstream.

In the graphic link above, the water churns and increases in velocity and doubles back on itself. If someone gets into it, they may become trapped and have to wait until it kicks them out. They can try to make for the edges or to shore, but they can exhaust themselves as they fight against the rapid.

Worse, if the formation of rock creates a cave or the flipside of the graphic above, then the churning creates a “washing machine” effect and they swirl in a submerged state. Other detritus has been caught by it in the past, maybe branches and their clothing can get hung up on it. If so, unless the hydraulic spits them out, then they can drown.

In rapids, you're moving from one dangerous spot to another in very brief seconds and then maneuvering the next one. Your shoulders and arms will burn from the exertion. Few people can do it for two days if Class 5 or more.

No one should attempt whitewater unless they're experienced, know the river, can read the signs, is in a good mental state, paying attention, blah blah blah.
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Rivers and “Tacoing”

People sometimes take inflatable kayaks called duckies down rivers and encounter rapids. They might also take a river raft since a duckie can only hold two people and a raft can hold 5 or more easily. If the craft isn't being steered well, it will impact on a rock, particularly a large rock on occasion. It may be that the technical ability of the crew isn't great or the velocity of the rapid picks up suddenly and is unexpected or they are paying attention or it's dark or all of the above.

When a craft impacts, if folds in and bounces off, and you may find that you're going backwards. Since the most experienced person is usually steering in the back, then ...great...the one who can't steer is steering and backwards. This means maneuvering and rowing to right yourself and the dynamics of the river and encountering yet another rapid can mean disaster. Often the hapless crew begins laughing when they should be deadly serious.

Worse things can always happen. The sudden jolt can fold the craft in two and then the crew is propelled briefly in towards the center of the craft and then the natural shape of the craft will right itself and fling out. When that happens, it's called “tacoing” and people get flung out from the craft in rapid water and rocks and hydraulics and it's no time for laughter.

If there are other craft, you may think that you can help them, but chances are, by the time you notice, you're downstream of them. The velocity of the water will make it most likely that you can't until the velocity peters out downstream. People wet and cold and scared look like drowned rats. They're heavy and hard to pull up out of the water. Maybe your craft is overloaded any way, and now you might tip your own craft when rescuing panicky wet crew.
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Useful Businesses Post-collapse: Ferrying travelers

Some enterprising people might utilize their proximity to a river and high traffic to create a service industry. Lots of people will come along from trading goods and migrating. Bridges might be out or commandeered. In good weather people will ford across the shallow sections, but it's riskier as their wagons might get hung up and hence abandoned. Or service animals can injure themselves as they pull along the river stones and lose their footing.

Often these were modified flatboats since they could haul so much on their flat surfaces. Then perhaps there would be a pulley system set up to pull the craft along in a controlled manner versus using poles when the craft was so heavy. This meant the ferryman had to maintain the equipment carefully from fraying and lubricating the pulleys and making sure all of it was secure too.

Of course people mostly traveled during the day, and if you came along at inopportune times, the travelers were stuck until the ferryman came back out to resume service. Naturally some taverns set up on either side to assist weary travelers wanted to sleep in a real bed.

Almost always in history, cities began as tiny tribal villages along river banks. Tribes need water for themselves and for crops. Game animals need that water too. It meant fishing, sturgeon egg harvesting, mussel hunting (and buttons and calcium sources for treating corn flour), beaver pelts, trade, etc. I have no doubt that post-collapse, it will all happen again as it has over and over in history, and so some smart folks may use the river to their advantage.
[link to en.wikipedia.org]
[link to digital.library.okstate.edu]
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Highwaymen

Because a lot of people are migrating in a collapse from urban to suburban to rural areas, there will be highwaymen too. Brazen ones will set up among the congestion and exact tolls. Since one stalled party ahead slows everyone behind, some security will initially happen, but as things decline, then those soldiers depart and even if a lot of people are armed, then it might be easier to pay the “toll”.

It's way easier to collect a toll than deal with a mass of irate travelers. Hard to replace the highwaymen's crew unless there's a lot of ex-cons, hungry soldiers, or outright criminals around. Oh wait, there's lots of them in urban areas, isn't there?

Worse ones will find stragglers who got late starts and are isolated and weak and seize goods or worse. If you look at maps, there are obviously places they might be. Not usually a stone's throw from the town, but a bit further ahead. Often they'll be living close by, somewhere that isn't immediately obvious, but they need meadows for their horses and fresh water and firewood.

If they create only a nuisance, since they know the terrain very well, they'll be mostly ignored. But if a constant threat, then some brave souls will repel them, or the locals will, or they'll be killed by their own outlaw band members who get a hankering for leadership. 'Might take awhile.

This means someone's riding “shotgun”, not just calling it out like people do now, but actually prepared to defend and be alert for ambush and pinch points. There's always natural areas, but even a covered exit may create a temporary place for bandits.

They'll be lots of wannabee highwaymen. The survivors will get better at it. Long term, they'll become experts at it.
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09/29/2012 07:29 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
There are rumblings now, both small ones and large ones. There always are as we must be vigilant and at a constant state of readiness, in military circles of course, but also because of the disintegration of the world economy.

China and Japan are coming to head. Israel and Iran too. Congress leaving on recess and for the campaign. Odd rumors tied all three.

It would be wisdom check supplies and look for deficits this weekend. Just sayin'.
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09/30/2012 12:17 AM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
On the Precipice of WWIII



Please prep now, not tomorrow, but now.
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
53% of the US budget goes for military spending. When there are that many programs and weapons and soldiers around, it's only a matter of time before someone decides to use those assets for economic gain.

Military spending doesn't create wealth unless it takes natural resources from another country. It can create stability or it can create jobs, however those jobs could be creating goods and services instead.

Because of the history of the Great Depression, we know that FDR's policies didn't change the massive economic downturn, only the gearing up of the war machine and the subsequent sale of arms to other countries involved in the war did make for a change. Out of work people became soldiers and worked in factories to produce munitions and gear for soldiers.

It's a very likely possibility for the future.

We are a deeply polarized people with such a slim margin of power that literally it's a neck to neck finish in any political race. Red or Blue or Red or Blue ad infinitum.

If you look today in the news, there are so many warning signs of conflict, that only the most obtuse wouldn't prepare for their family by having extra and taking precautions. Be calm; be prepared; keep your head down. Avoid conflict as most likely you'll be the only one to protect your family, and if you get embroiled in localized activity then you'll doom them. Evasion is far easier than head on into a struggle.

Those that survive even a two month window when so many are not preparing...well they might be the ones to rebuild later.Stay optimistic, but vigilant.

Even in you don't believe in the Source, consider the possibility that God exists and has sent a messenger in Jesus Christ.
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
Weather and Collapse

Weather was and is the most important aspect of self-reliance. It is powerful and will alter all of your preparedness. It will change all your plans. It will make you reassess, reevaluate, redo what you thought was important to save your family.

Things are changing in the Earth for whatever reason. This means while you might be entirely safe and secure, some change may suddenly happen and you need to relocate or adapt your lifestyle. If you don't or cant', then your family may die.


Prepare, learn skills that promote a lifestyle of self-reliance. Allow God to find you in the wilderness and embrace a relationship with God.

Farewell
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
What's happening post-Hurricane Sandy
or Do you still think the government will take care of you in a disaster?

I remember listening to a FEMA official many years ago. They were discussing a catastrophic of an earthquake over a wide region. After describing the scenario of wide-spread destruction, they literally said, “Be prepared to be on your own for two weeks without government assistance.” What was true then, is still true today.

Ask your grandparents, “How much food did you put up canning each gardening season? Why did you do it?” I'll bet the answers will surprise you. Their larders were full of food, and only when they ran out of these items did they purchase the same items from grocery stores, if they did at all. Chances are they did without if they didn't have it in their food pantries. Ask them, “Did you hunt or fish or raise animals?” I bet that many did, or at least had the equipment and ability to do so.

Food doesn't come from a grocery store. It gets moved there. The ability for a grocery to operate relies upon on-going supply chains distributing resources to the vendor. If the vendor has no electricity and an ability to operate credit/debit/EBT machines and has personnel, then they cannot operate at all. Even if they had those things, what's the chance that they could be overrun by people without resources in bad areas?

Generators don't work unless there is fuel. Yes, there are resourceful electricians who can wire up generators to gas stations so they can continue to pump the gas. This is a dangerous operation. Imagine the issues with spark arrestors to prevent fires. At some point someone will try it, and you can imagine that at least one major fire will occur. What about the legality of doing this? Will it void fire insurance for that period plus will the vendor be able to acquire fire insurance later?

Generators are noisy. If someone has one, and the disaster lasts long, then you might be perceived as having supplies and may place a big target on your home. Few people can repel intruders if they attack en mass.

Even the best prepared can lose everything when the polluted sewer water mixes in a storm surge and floods a home. This water is laden with coliform bacteria like E coli. Anything that it touches it ruins. This is why people are asking for clothing, food, and water. There are bound to be lots of people who literally have nothing now.

There is a huge population of homeless in the Northeast. Many may be dead. Many may have been living in subterranean areas that flooded. There is a very real chance of issues like typhoid fever, cholera, leptospirosis and hepatitis A.

NYC is not the only place that got hit. It's been several days since the hurricane event, and the majority of the news coverage has been in this locale since it's “juicier”. Even so, by now, there's other news to cover since the public is interested in “other news”.

Who is making it post-Hurricane Sandy? Preppers may be making it easier since they had much more than 3 days worth of food, water, and supplies. They probably weren't the ones making last minute purchases.

Why not be like your grandparents and be more prudent? Learning skills, having supplies, prioritizing your life, these are ways to cope now, rather than being like the city dwellers that are cold, wet, hungry, and defecating in hallways.

Think logically. How long does it take to organize relief efforts, deploy them, feed and house them, bring in supplies, create a supply chain to provide on-going relief efforts, bring in medical assistance, plus provide security for them all? We cannot expect that this happens immediately. We must realize that the bulk of any such effort will be at the places with the most population and political clout. This means that those places that are far smaller will receive even less assistance and that it will take even longer to get it, if at all.

You are mainly on your own.
Anonymous Coward
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11/02/2012 09:00 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
The Nor'easter

Catastrophes are complex events. It's not the initial event that hurts the people and infrastructure, it's a combination of lack of preparation plus the effect on utilities, fuel for vehicles and generators, potable water, food, and other supplies plus the response (or lack of one) plus the weather plus crumbling infrastructure post-event plus disease plus the random unknown. The economic effects are long lasting.

Right now, we should be mobilizing supplies to the affected regions with a massive outpouring of materials and trained personnel. It's been too many days with too little results, and now it's biting us in the behind. As bad as Hurricane Katrina was handled, this current farce makes that one look like brilliant strategic and tactical response. We have far less people on the ground and doing the things that must be done to prevent illness and death. It would be far better to overreact with a huge response that this current feeble debacle.

Worse things will happen, and what scant amount of response is forthcoming will be met with Mother Nature's fury if the Nor'easter comes. Exposure is a primary issue. Many people are hunkering down in cold buildings, some of which probably should be evacuated, but they haven't been evaluated as condemned yet.

People can make it for quite awhile without adequate food if reasonably healthy. Many screwed up and didn't prepare and expected the government and private relief to help them. Now that's besides the point.

Water is an entirely different issue. Three days is the max, and many people may be drinking impure water. This is particularly an issue since hurricanes most often end up polluting local water sources with raw sewage.

It should concern all levels of government that many medically fragile folks may have no one checking on them. Think of the elderly, chronically ill, handicapped, mentally ill, homeless population, etc. Of utmost concern is that no one seems to be organizing volunteer squads to check on people. There's a lot of people who might volunteer if the right leader will motivate them to do so.

There was food and medicines that could have been purchased from stores that either had to throw out the food or were looted from. More supplies are sitting there, but have no means of being transported and doled out to the shelters who need them. This is a huge mistake. Again volunteers could be used to transport these goods to the people.

If the Nor'easter comes in, it will dramatically setback efforts based upon weather and the effect on the fragile supply chain coming in. Imagine the effect of snow, wind, and rain? Try organizing under those circumstances.

It's been several days since landfall, and rescue workers are getting tired and some may be getting very little sleep and may fall ill. In addition a very tiny National Guard force is in place versus the amount of soldiers used in Katrina.

A much higher death toll may be hidden for the time being, and a much higher death toll may occur because of concern about marathons, politics and other nonsense has been a priority.

NYC is not the only place where the Hurricane hit. Things could be particularly nightmarish in any metro area given the higher levels of poverty and higher concentration of people coupled with gang activity.

Watch as it all unfolds. The catastrophe you are watching now will be a clear sign of what you could expect in an economic collapse.

While the people in the affected zones are waiting for help, it would behoove them to band together and attempt to take care of themselves as communities and creatively problem solve and cut through red tape. Throwing eggs at utility workers, defecating in hallways, complaining in gas lines, this is lunacy. Open anarchy could easily happen. Look for it.
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11/02/2012 11:38 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
What should have already happened in the affected hurricane zones

Imagine the governor calls all of the mayors. “I'm going on camera in the next six hours. I'm putting aside all politics for the time being and giving you the opportunity to do the same. Let's show America were not always divisive and at each others' throats over partisan issues.

Let's pool our resources and create supply chains to the affected regions. Let's make public pleas in our cities and ask for volunteers primarily from those cities to assist, as well as from the non-affected regions. Let's give state tax credits to those who roll up their sleeves and begin work. Let's find a way to creatively purchase materials now so we can get it there as fast as possible. Let's figure out the best ways organizations can donate now.

Volunteers will need to be housed and fed. The easiest thing to do is ask for volunteers in the spirit of patriotism from the affected areas since they already have housing, but also ask for volunteers from elsewhere. Still some places can temporarily house volunteers. Let's talk to all of the existing houses of worship, regardless of belief system, and see if they can house them and possibly feed them. This is a win-win situation for them since it's good public relations. Let's see if they'll do it. If not, let's make it worth their while somehow to enable housing for volunteers.

A lot of people are unable to get to work. Let's see if they're willing to work for their state and if we don't have enough volunteers, let's help them with tax abatements.”

Now the mayors do the same thing. They help it happen on at the city level. They follow through, with the idea that should the same thing happen in their regions, that a similar process will assist them in reciprocity.

Clothing drives are organized. Food drives too. Water trucks load up from the closest regions to deploy not bottled water, but tanks of water so large quantities will be delivered efficiently. In the meantime, water companies who have donated bottled water are also given tax benefits for donating.

There are generators in some cities. Relocate them. This would be the toughest sell as the Nor'easter is coming though. Gar is sitting somewhere in the state. Move it where it needs to go.

Every city can send someone. My guess is that a lot of people would like to volunteer, they just haven't been asked. Appeal to their patriotism, then their sense of fair play, then to their wallet.

How many unemployed people are in the affected regions? Surely they could temporarily call workers to assist in the transportation and supply chain and distribution effort.

A lot of materials are available through the state. The issue is getting it there and having the personnel to unload it and move it to the right places. This means making deals with the trucking unions probably and also working with non-union truckers too. There probably are many owner operators who aren't working in this bad economy and need the work. Maybe the railroads would move quite a bit of it, but it'll mean rescheduling. Ask them. Ask the barge companies too.

It's going to take some time to get things back on track. Think about Hurricane Katrina. A lot of contractors are needed. Facilitate so that it's to their benefit to arrive, roll up their sleeves, and get to work. Fooling around and arguing over who is union and who is not is foolish while people are hungry, cold, wet, and homeless.

Use the media to get the word out. They're hungry for stories about the hurricane. Feed them this information rather than wasting time talking about the isolated cases of public discontent.

It takes a lot of time to allocate military resources to an affected area. The truth is a lot of National Guard folks are already deployed in regions, and so that means stealing from Peter to pay Paul. In the mean time, move around civilians.

This isn't rocket science. It means not relying upon FEMA and the Red Cross and actually asking people to help instead. Let those agencies help, but don't count upon them to do it all.
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11/03/2012 12:22 AM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
Why am I writing about the hurricane?

While the hurricane awakens some public awareness, albeit briefly until the next media distraction, most people will go right back to their nonchalant attitude about the state of their country. Whatever I write about, it's mainly about trying to hold your attention long enough for you do decide to do something...anything to help you prepare.

Imagine not a major weather disaster, but an economic one. The same sort of strategic and tactical issues of security, infrastructure, supply chains, transportation, and volunteers will have to be address in your communities. You'll have to motivate people in your area to band together, or you'll each be separately trying to make it long enough to get past issues with the sociopathic members of your community. A much larger issue is dealing with the complete non-prepper members of your community as they'll be eventually forced into the sociopathic category unless you help facilitate by leadership.

We all need each other. That's what all civilization is about. Yes, you can prep all you want, but unless you can hold back the hordes that don't, then it all comes to naught eventually.

I urge you to watch some films like One Hundred Mornings. There a small Irish village experiences a collapse, and eventually despite having supplies, our hapless blended family resorts to violence and crime.

The weather is changing. There is a dearth of produce to be gathered from the meadows and forests, and likewise the amount of game and fishing will diminish as it progresses. If you're not prepared today, then there's little chance you'll make it. Don't think you'll wing it by foraging. Don't imagine you'll make it until past the spring and summer harvests. That's a long way off. Don't think you'll merely bug out to a “safe zone”. There will be few safe zones. Now is the time to re-evaluate what's important. Use this time to hone skills. The biggest skill you can learn is how to talk to people and motivate them in your community.
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11/03/2012 01:31 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
[link to www.nbc40.net]

Ever wonder how and why carbon monoxide is such an issue for preppers? Carbon monoxide is an odorless gas that is produced by combustion. In a power outage, people burn items indoors for light and heat. These combustables produce carbon monoxide gas.

Our bodies produce hemoglobin which is a special molecule which is attracted to oxygen. This molecule is carried in the blood and ordinarily it helps carry oxygen to tissues. The main issue is hemoglobin has a greater affinity for carbon monoxide than oxygen. This means if carbon monoxide is produced, then hemoglobin will grab onto that molecule RATHER than oxygen. Once carbon monoxide has been taken up by hemoglobin, then the molecule can't let go of it, and people suffocate without swift medical attention.

You must be vigilant to ensure that there's proper ventilation. Many times generators are placed very close to houses and breezeways and the fumes are pulled into open windows. Other times people burn crazy things indoors like charcoal brickettes indoors, a major mistake. It's counter-intuitive to open windows to create a draft on purpose when you're cold and trying to stay warm, but it's essential to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.

The toxic amount of exposure creeps up on sleeping occupants usually. Even if people are keeping watches, which are essential during a catastrophe anyway, they may fall asleep due to the build up of carbon monoxide.

Be very cautious about burning indoors. Better to be a little colder due to drafts and safer than to accidentally hurt your family from burning inside.
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11/03/2012 01:46 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
Safety Issues with Fuel

A lot of people are using generators and fuels than ordinarily do. Some may be drawing fuels from their vehicles because of fuel shortages. It's crucial to use a ground rod driven into the soil and to attach a cable to fuel cannisters to reduce sparks of electricity. Usually there's clipped on. It's easy to generate static charges and then one spark could ignite the fuel while it's transferred.

When working on a fuel line, it's important to use brass tools to prevent sparking too. Brass tools are uncommon and usually specially ordered specifically for this use.

Obviously you can siphon from fuel tanks, but what's not obvious is that when you introduce a sipon into a tank, often the siponing tube will end up at the fume level and if you try aspirating by mouth, you'll get a lungful of fumes. It's far easier to use a manual hand pump and safer too.

In a collapse, some people will try bypassing into fuel tanks. This takes a lot of prudence and expertise and an accidental ignition will kill off the foolhardy who attempt it without any skills.

Have a care and use common sense when filling tanks. In a collapse, your tribe may be using a well for water. If you spill fuel around a well site, you just ruined it.
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11/03/2012 02:22 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
If anyone is curious about Hurrican Sandy and how one prepper has dealt with it, then you may wish to watch Brooklyn Prepper's channel.





Anonymous Coward
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11/03/2012 02:32 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
[link to www.thehomeforsurvival.com]

Here's a link to a site that combs through the survival/prepping sites and puts up links to the best ones of the day. It's well worth bookmarking because I've found a lot of really great information for people starting out to advanced homesteading.
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11/03/2012 03:32 PM
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Re: Last minute tips for parents when the SHTF
The Least of These
[link to www.kkoh.com]
"The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.' Matthew 25:40

We've been hearing 100 stories about how wretched people can react when confronted by hardship. Most of the GLP community won't read these words, but for the few that enjoy reading these prep tips, here's a heart-warming story.

A group of registered nurses in a Neonatal Intensive Care unit (NICU) had to evacuate their unit of neonate patients in the midst of Hurricane Sandy. They'd lost power, and were located nine floors up. The babies were very susceptible to the elements, medically fragile, and were all on oxygen. The only way to handle it was to gentle bag them with a handheld medical device so they'd get oxygen and hand carry them down the flight of stairs and on to safety.

Sure, someone might eventually come to help them, but that would take a lot of time and all the rescue personnel were already deployed. With the security guards help, they managed to extricate themselves and their charges.

During a catastrophic event, we have responsibilities as the children of the Source. We can be selfish and only take care of ourselves and family, or we can reframe and see the Other as our brother and sister. Yeshua, sent by the Source said that “whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.” There may be very little we can do, if an event is widespread, but in the interim time as it builds up, we might be able to help those who come along.

Many of these people may not be able to care for themselves. They may have lost loved ones. They may be totally alone. They may be sick or dying. They may be a drain on what few resources we have. When the end comes and you face your Maker, wouldn't you rather be able to look up into the eyes of the Source and say, “I was very fallible. I made many mistakes, but you know that I did some good as well, Lord.

What comes around...goes around. That person you help save may help you. Maybe they won't, but maybe someone else will. Do the right thing when the chips are down.

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