Monthly Archives: July 2016

Should You Dig In or Bug Out?

By: Tom Chatham

Should you dig in or bug out? That is a question many people will have to ask themselves at some point in the future. That answer will be different for many people due to a range of circumstances and conditions.

What is right for one person and location may be lethal for someone else in another location. That is why you need to have situational awareness and critical thinking ability. You need to analyze the threats and determine the best course of action in that time and place. What once was a safe location could quickly become a death trap if you fail to see the changing situation. This is why normalcy bias kills.

Just like a person who loses their job and decides to stay where they are and continue life as normal while watching their savings quickly depleting. They fail to look ahead and contemplate the dangers if they take no action. If they did an honest assessment and determined they probably will not find a new job before they run out of money and lose their home, they would come to that conclusion while they still had resources to work with and determine a safer course of action.

Your knowledge, location and preparedness level will largely determine what you should do at any given time. When disaster arrives what you do and when you do it will determine how well you overcome the problems and make it to the end.

If you live in a large city and something happens that destroys basic services and the ability to care for your family, you may not have much time to act. In some situations you must act before the disaster strikes if you are to have any chance of getting through it. Hurricane Katrina is a good example. Martial law that cuts off cities from surrounding areas is another.

In most survival situations your chances of survival in a rural area is about 10 times better than in a city. That is because you have lower population density and you are surrounded by the resources you need to survive. That means fewer people competing for those resources. You also have the space to produce more resources that you need over time.

Even in the country you will face dangers and have to determine if you should stay in place or move to another location. Fires, floods or roving bands of survivors from other places may make a rural location unsafe. You need to see those dangers coming before they happen and decide your best course of action.

In the end, your knowledge, location and preparedness level will help you decide what you should do before you find yourself in a situation you cannot get out of. There are many unknowns when a disaster happens. Being prepared and having thought through some of those potential problems reduces some of those unknowns so that you can make good decisions. The better informed that you are, the better your decisions will be.

The decision to dig in or bug out will be a pivotal moment in your life because it will have serious repercussions on future events. You need to make decisions that greatly enhance your chances to survive not put you in more danger. You need to expand your comfort zone to allow you to think outside of normal situations and doing so will help eliminate your normalcy bias and give you the best chance to make good decisions in a timely manner. When the worst happens, you may not have the benefit of someone else telling you what to do, it will be up to you to make those decisions. Once you make a decision you will have to live with it.

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Surviving Long Term Without Electricity

By: Tom Chatham

We all like to think that even if something catastrophic happens we will still have at least some access to electricity to run some of our most critical items. It is in our nature to be optimistic when it comes to our well being. Unfortunately the universe has no limit to the ways it can harm us. Whether through natural or manmade occurrences, we are subject to crisis at any time.

It is this potential for hardship that we are required as thinking persons to take due diligence and insure we can overcome potential events at least to some degree. Preparedness allows us to exert a certain amount of control over what happens to us.

It does not matter if it is a hurricane, earthquake, CME or war. How well we cope with the event is entirely up to us. When the worst of events happen we are forced back onto our own resources until things stabilize and resupply of basic needs is restored. In some cases it could be weeks or even years before this stabilization happens and distribution systems are reestablished. This will depend on the type of event and its damaging effects.

When the worst happens and society as a whole is stripped of its modern conveniences, only those that can cope with the new reality will likely survive. This means knowing how to use the ways of past generations to get by from day to day. Survival will depend on how prepared you are to revert to these older techniques to fulfill logistical needs. Here are some of the major items you will need to deal with when the worst happens.

Water sources and pumping –
Finding and retrieving clean water is a critical need when services are cut off for extended durations. Knowing where to go locally to find clean water and having a way to collect it and carry it home become life saving measures. Having the means to filter water or knowing how to build devices to do so becomes priceless knowledge.

Growing food –
Having food stores is essential to staying alive following an event until distribution and production systems are working again. Storable food gives you the time to find new sources of food or to begin growing your own food. The ability to grow your own food provides you with a sustainable source of food for indefinite periods of time. Extra food production also gives you a product to trade with.

Storing food –
Once you have food you must have a way to store it until you use it. Different foods have different storage requirements and shelf life. You may need several types of storage to satisfy all of your needs. Root cellars, dehydration, canning and salting are some of the most popular methods that do not require electricity to maintain food supplies.

Providing heat and light –
Providing heat and light without electricity will require primitive methods to some extent. Wood stoves for heating and cooking are necessities over long periods of time. Some stoves with glass doors will even provide some light. Oil lamps and candles are the most basic types of home lighting. In desperate situations it is possible to make additional candles and produce liquids to burn in lamps.

Transportation-
When modern types of transportation no longer work you must cultivate older systems to fulfill your needs. Bicycles, horses, boats and walking will be the fallback systems most will use when modern systems fail.

Communications-
Without electricity to send and receive signals from afar, older more local systems will be required. Bike or horse messengers will become standard again. For more technical minded people like ham radio operators, Morse code can still be utilized with the use of signal mirrors or signal lamps. Message boards at central locations will be useful for dispersion of information to local populations.

Sanitation-
Poor sanitation has the ability to kill more people than anything else on Earth. We see it all the time following major disasters. Whatever your living situation is now, it could drastically change within minutes. Understanding proper sanitation methods such as how to build an outhouse in your yard can mean the difference between life and death. You need to know how you will dispose of waste safely if your current system stops working. This is especially true if you live in a city where your options may be limited.

Security-
In the old days before telephones, the sheriff was a long ride away. Any imminent threats had to be dealt with by you. That can happen again and does following some disasters. Being able to keep your surroundings safe following some event will allow you to start the rebuilding process. Lack of a safe area makes survival much harder especially long term.

Medicine-
Long ago when a person got sick they either sent for the doctor or carried the sick person to him. This usually required actual horse power in either case meaning it was slow. When this happens today we have the advantage of having modern medicines and equipment to keep people alive when they would have likely died in the past. Many of these modern techniques and medicines can be maintained by individuals to insure they are available to injured persons if help cannot come. Knowledge of medical procedures and organic medicines would be necessary if a long term disaster occurred.

The possibility of total loss of electrical production and electrical devices is very small but not impossible. The only way to be fully prepared for any type of event is to assume the worst case will happen and have a plan to deal with the needs of the community. It is good to have back up equipment to satisfy your needs but some natural disasters can destroy that equipment leaving you only the most basic means to work with. When that happens what you know becomes very important.

Knowing how to take care of basic needs for long durations without the aid of modern conveniences becomes more critical as the world around us becomes more automated and technologically based. Many people today cannot function when something as simple as a power outage or communication outage occurs. They have forgotten how to think for themselves and think through the most simple problems.

If the worst should happen such as an earthquake or major war, leaving you cut off from modern services, it will be up to you to work through the problems you face with the tools available to you. Help may not come for a very long time and if that happens your life will be in your hands.

Revenge of The Silver Bugs

By: Tom Chatham

It has been a long wait for the silver bugs but the future may indeed see them richly rewarded for all of their patience. Those that have held on are now about to see the end game unfold.

There have been many projections on the highs that silver could hit in the future ranging from a low of $100 to highs of $1,000.

It should be noted that much of the above ground silver has been used in the past few decades for industrial purposes that leave most of that silver not reclaimed due to the small amounts used in individual products. The plans of China to increase solar production will take a great deal of future silver production to power their energy grid.

The current production has silver at about a 10 to 1 ratio of gold. On the surface this means that silver should be valued at least at the 10/1 ratio. The current disproportionate ratio of 78/1 will insure silver rises at a higher percentage than gold during the current bull market.

If current projections of $10,000 gold are anywhere near correct that would put silver in the $1,000 range. Regardless of the ultimate price, gold and silver will rise substantially as chaos enters the markets. It is this chaos that will also require people to store the necessary resources to care for their families until the chaos subsides. Gold and silver holdings do not insure access to resources during chaos but will be valuable afterward to take advantage of good deals due to revaluations in the economy.

In times like this when most people are at risk of losing much of their wealth, the current low price of silver can help the average person not only preserve what little wealth they have but even increase it many fold to offset the failure of incomes to keep up with real inflation over the past few decades.

This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to beat the bankers at their own game. When the economic leverage shifts back from the paper wealth to real money those holding real money will reap the benefits. Even small holdings of silver will help individuals to insure their wealth will remain in tact after this economic cycle comes to an end.

Gold and silver are a form of escape hatch in the banker controlled economic system we are forced to play in. When they pull the plug on the current paper wealth, those that know no better will cling to those worthless paper assets to the very end never dreaming they will someday be totally worthless. The very few that understand what is taking place will use that escape hatch to save what they have so they can continue to prosper in the future.

The bankers know of this escape hatch but they have few ways to close it without alerting the people so they use their position and trust to convince the population this doorway is dangerous. They call it a barbarous relic that has no place in a modern society. They do this because they know the truth. If they can convince the people long enough, by the time people know the truth it will be too late to exit this door.

Those that have already taken this door out of the system are now looking in at the fire that is about to burn the house down. When the rush to the exits happen, many will not make it out. There is still time to get out ahead of the crowd but time is now very short. Any more procrastination on your part will likely be lethal to your economic health. On this Independence day free yourself from the banker controlled system by purchasing some real money and renew your declaration of freedom.