Things That Can Keep You Awake

  • The whiners and urban campers of Occupy Wall Street have given way to a more energized Antifa, and Social Justice Warriors who feel justified in violence.

  • North Korea has nuclear weapons, and is working out the whole “missile” thing.

  • There are street protests which continue to flair up over police involved shootings. Sometimes the protests are justified and the shootings are not. 

  • Knife and car attacks are occurring in Europe and the UK, while more dangerous stuff is available on this side of the pond.

  • The United States government is in an internal conflict which may compromise the security of all of us. Between investigations, leaks and deep state conspiracies…I don’t trust the feds to plan and execute a ham sandwich.


I’m not an apocalyptic kind of person, but I think there are reasons to become prepared for difficult situations. I’m taking a course in emergency preparedness, and I’ll probably post some things about that here.

I’m beginning a semi-annual prep for hurricane season, and that might sneak on here also. For now, I’m trying to get enough food and water in the house to meet needs for 2 weeks without eating the stuff way in the back of the fridge.  I have lots of ways to cook if the power goes out, and we can use candles and flashlights for about that long.  Radios? Check, including wind up and shortwave. H-bomb

I’m not digging a fallout shelter.

Of course, the economy could pick up, the president will grow into the office, the protesters will all get jobs in the school districts and radical Islam could fizzle out.

Without giving up too much (because of OPSEC and PERSEC) what are you doing differently now, as opposed to a decade ago?

Update: It might sound odd, but I just bought at a very low price, seven 5-gallon water jugs. The likelihood of losing water service is actually pretty low but 35 gallons goes a long way. Tap water is fine for up to 6 months, but many say it lasts longer.  So, every few months, I dump out the water and refill. They say store water in a dark, cool place. 

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10 Responses to Things That Can Keep You Awake

  1. onwyrdsdream says:

    Antifa, whose name is the opposite of what they actually are, are much easier to aggressively arrest. The more violent they get, the less I worry that civilization will fail to respond. Occupy you could maybe stick in a cell for a few days. But arson, assault, burglary, conspiracy to do the same. Really, they should be brought up on treason, but that won’t happen. Stopping people from breaking stuff and hurting people, and from aggressively trying to limit other people’s rights is pretty much why we have laws. Antifa isn’t a problem without a solution, it’s just a problem that people need to have enough guts to actually solve. The best solution to Antifa is to not elect democrats, who worry over the police .. doing their jobs? and the rights of people… to hurt other people and destroy their property? Yeah, don’t elect democrats and they’ll fizzle. In particular as their goal is anarchy/socialism. If you move in the opposite direction from what they want, even a worm knows to turn away from pain. Though, it’s only when they’re more indirect that they have any chance, so that is worrying in it’s own way. But I probably won’t live another hundred years to see what that particular communicable mental infirmity known as progressive can eventually achieve.

    North Korea is a problem that should have been nipped in the bud long ago. From a purely military standpoint, it is also a problem we could nip at any time. A paper tiger has no teeth. Trump called what the United States has been doing “strategic patience” while saying that was over. But, well, it was never very strategic. What exactly have we gained from patience other than not committing blood and treasure at that time? Originally it was so we wouldn’t end up trying to fight against an inferior foe who none-the-less had the backing of one country with nuclear weapons and another with a billion people that it didn’t really worry about if they lived or died. But after the cold war was over, it was because South Korea was developing into one of the world’s most important economies and their capital could be hit with moderately large guns from across the border. The biggest reason we do nothing now isn’t China, nor the long gone Soviet Union, but because in all that time that we haven’t done anything, they’ve built a tremendous amount of long range firepower and directed it at South Korea’s capital, which is practically close enough a baseball game on the border would result in broken windows in it’s skyscrapers. Still, actually destroying the government there is an action that would barely take effort. It isn’t as though we don’t have plenty of justification.

    The protests are sometimes justified, but the particulars of the protests are often not justified. Going back to the breaking stuff and hurting people re:Antifa, it’s that all over again. The left has learned that leadership, particularly Democrat party leadership, doesn’t have the guts to enforce the laws against them, and hurting people and breaking their stuff is a great way to attract the likes of CNN, and get the whole nation to listen to your grievances. Not only will CNN listen to your grievances, they’ll listen completely uncritically. They’ll even try to disprove or ignore any inconvenient facts that come along that disagree with the agenda their reporters support. The famous picture of anchors doing the hands up don’t shoot dance? Airing your grievances in this day and age isn’t even difficult. A single tweet can motivate thousands, even millions, with nothing better to do. Well. Mostly it will only motivate them to tweet or post though. People on twitter don’t have any particular power just because of twitter. But a thousand or million motivated by setting fires or by tweeting, nothing actually gets done. Because getting stuff done involves hard work, and also working with society. And while that doesn’t mean you need to perfectly obey the laws, you should never harm the citizens. Because people who are sympathetic will quickly hate you once you take away their ability to work, or damage their home. A stranger’s death can be made important to the common man, but it isn’t going to be more important to them than the $50 it takes to fix their mailbox if you break it getting their attention. Humans are ultimately self interested, and this is ignored by these protesters. I can’t really imagine why, because it is difficult to imagine people more self interested than these protestors.

    And, well. The protests are quite often not justified, but rather are a bunch of piss and fury over a misrepresentation of the facts. Weren’t most of the big blowups actually because the story that gets represented to the mass media … or BY the mass media, in such a way that when all the facts actually come out, generally it does end up matching the story told by the “perpetrator” about the actions of the “victim.” Rather, often, it’s just like the “perpetrator” claimed, the victim violently attacked them when the situation shouldn’t have been violent from the start. Which isn’t to say that cops are never in the wrong. But well, just to say that the “victims” aren’t always right either. We like to back David and shun Goliath. But, well. Batman is a David and Goliath story as well. Only Batman isn’t David. Sometimes, even though one side is definitively bigger, stronger, and more powerful, they’re also right. Examples abound in real life as well, but, well. Most aren’t as famous as David. Or Batman.

    Knife and car attacks on that side of the pond.. They’re also seeing any number of attacks involving firearms and explosives on the other side of the pond. I don’t really agree that we’re getting worse. Per capita, I don’t think we’ve gotten it as bad after we were woken up by that one attack.The Paris attack, the Manchester attack. That French satire magazine. Numerous other examples. Besides 9-11, the worst terrorist attacks were generally overseas, though I guess there was the horror of the Boston marathon. We have had a few random crazies motivated by their 7 minutes in the spotlight, but over all it is safer here than over seas. I don’t think we’ve had someone lop off a person’s head on the streets like the British had? Or that incident with the nanny?

    The thing about terrorism is that it’s means is to kill people who are not actively aggressive toward you. It is a cowardly way of fighting, that only accomplishes anything if you make someone who is generally much stronger than you afraid that you’ll disrupt their lives. Rather, weren’t some people angry at a guy who was cursing the terrorists because he was not being culturally sensitive? People who are bending over backward to receive you instead being relieved of their lives. In any case, from the standpoint of economics, you just make sure they get none of what they want and a lot of what they don’t want. If you had a bombing run on Mecca every time a terrorist caused someone to stub their toe, the level of self policing would get pretty extreme quickly. I’m not advocating that particular response, I’m just saying they also have things they value that they can’t stand to loose. They’re attacking things WE can’t stand to loose. We have to do the same at a greater degree to get them to stop. Because we can’t ignore what they’re doing so they don’t get what they want. It isn’t their lives or property. Often isn’t their family. But they have to have something, otherwise they wouldn’t risk (or end) their lives to strike you.

    I suppose you could also mean in general, but generally the US is the safest place on Earth. There are some places with lower crime or some other statistic. But that doesn’t mean they’re safer. That only means they haven’t been tested. They’re massively importing social strain the likes of we haven’t seen here in at least 50 years. Though if we’re talking level of social strain, it’s more like 150. There are also enemies at the gate that they either aren’t recognizing as enemies, or are choosing to ignore. When you live next to a hungry bear, can you really expect to never get mauled?

    The government should never be trusted to plan. Outside of the military, it hardly even has any reason that it should plan. The government should simply come up with a set of laws designed to protect our liberty, enforce them, and do little else. It isn’t particularly good at any thing else. Every business like thing it does loses money. Once the government controls the means of production- and well, they control a good percentage of logistics with their ownership of roads and mail, and often have hands in water, sewer, power, medicine, research, and have even taken over retirement savings… you can be assured they’re wasting a substantial amount of resources that a competitive market would use better to accomplish the same things. Statists promote experts, but an expert vs several someones out to turn a profit will lose every time. Even when the experts are economists- the carbon market where some Chinese companies built factories to manufacture chemicals deemed harmful only not to use them at all, in order to earn money by not working though the carbon market which was supposed to manipulate people already doing “bad things” into other behaviors…

    People worry about Google having too much of your information, yet, isn’t the reason that Joe the Plumber had all sorts of his personal information put out before the masses because someone with a government job that had access to all sorts of personal information decide it was worth spreading? They have to know a certain amount about you for tax purposes, but because of how are taxes are, they end up knowing just about everyone, and needing an army to process that information. 17% of our population work for the government! And while a substantial percentage of that is the military, it isn’t the lion’s share by any means. And do you trust as many as 1 in 5 of the US population with potential access to your information? You don’t know how many Reality Winners there are in the government, but it probably isn’t a few.

    I’m not prepared for civilization to crash, a nuclear war, or a revolution that will place us into a communist state. Mostly because it is fundamentally impossible to truly be prepared for any of those things. I somewhat feel that survivalists are somewhat wishful thinkers in an assortment of ways, and as a skillset it’s basically a just a hobby. I don’t really want to have a supply of dehydrated ground beef on hand, no mater how long it lasts. It should also be fundamentally unnecessary to be prepared, as outside of the initial strike which either affects you in an unavoidable way or doesn’t affect you at all, none are as sudden as modern society’s ability to spread information and move money. A Nuclear strike of the level North Korea is capable of wouldn’t be enough to cause great harm to country as a whole, though certainly to a large number of individuals, and at the same time it would certainly be the end of North Korea, and depending on the president, perhaps China. Pretty sure North Korea’s leadership knows that. China’s suspects it. How much north Korea’s perpetually crazy leadership cares, on the other hand?

    Antifa, BLM, and the rest aren’t so big that they’re worth worrying about on the grander scale and can be nipped in the bud simply by not voting for the idiot who’d give them a place “to break stuff.” Rather, the more violent they get the less effective they’ll be . This is evidenced by how they only seem to be a problem within certain cities, and not really in others. My town wouldn’t tolerate them, and as a college town it’s somewhat liberal. A terrorist strike isn’t something you can plan for as an individual, beyond the general things you do to ensure your safety as an individual. Be better armed and get an alarm system? Just address it like the perceived local level of safety has dropped a bit. As an individual you’re more at risk when you go to work, anyway. Killing someone in their homes just doesn’t make the news like it probably should.

    The government might leak my information? Isn’t that just common sense? And sure they can’t be trusted to plan. But I have a plan for that. Capitalism. Distributed planning between the minds of several hundred million beats a million experts every single time. I think even if the government fails, so long as we retain the vestiges of civilization- to a certain extent respecting property and life, trading what we can make for what we can’t, sooner or later civilization will spring forth again. We may be the last beacon of hope, and if it is extinguished it may be a while before someone lights one once again, but so long as mankind remains, such a light will be lit anew. And as soon as it’s nice and bright, tyrants, anarchists, and socialists (if they are indeed different things) will once again begin the long process of trying to extinguish it.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Grace says:

    “I’m not an apocalyptic kind of person, but I think there are reasons to become prepared for difficult situations. I’m taking a course in emergency preparedness, and I’ll probably post some things about that here.”

    Please do, Dave. I am always interested in hearing what others folks are doing in this regard, and learning from their efforts.

    I look forward to further posts on this topic.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Back on his old site Kim du Toit used to have really good articles on “bug out” bags, both for leaving and for staying put. Maybe we should gently pester him to repost them with updates after he gets back from his UK sabatical.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. sam says:

    If one has a source of water nearby–pond, river, lake– a gallon of unscented bleach will give you all you need to sterilize a LOT of water, without having to boil it. Takes up less space that all the gallons of water a family would need.

    For food– the giant bags of rice and dried beans you can pick up at Costco will provide ample, if dull, sustenance for quite a while.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dr_Mike says:

      Whole oats, and a grain mill to crack them into steel cut oats, pack a lot more nutrition into a given volume. Add a variety of dried fruits for, well, variety.

      White rice has most of the nutrients removed, and brown rice goes bad eventually.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Sam says:

        it’s true that white rice is nutrient poor but you need calories to stay alive. As an easy to store, easy to prepare option (and cheap) rice is hard to beat. Would supplemental vitamins make up the difference? (those have a shelf life that’s much longer than mine).


      • Dr_Mike says:

        The Mormons actually have this down to a science, they suggest wheat not rice. More nutrients, and lasts for years as the whole grain. They suggest a variety of grains, 400 lbs of grain and ~ 80 lbs of beans will give you your required protein intake for one adult for one year, and 1600 calories per day. So right at the edge of survival. That’s like (10) 5 gallon buckets of grain, and two of beans, plus one of sugar or honey, and one of oil (really, use several smaller bottles of oil for cooking, don’t go for a 5 gallon container! And that’s for one person for one year.

        But even then, they suggest that at a minimum, and suggest you start supplementing that. Canned meats, canned fruits and veggies (beef stew is a canned meat with canned veggies.)

        And no, I’m not there with my preps now. But I live west of the Hudson now, so that helps.


  4. Sam says:

    Powdered milk and corn starch have long shelf lives as well. Add in salt, honey, vinegar, you have the basics for survival and the ability to make decent soups with what can be scavenged.

    A good book on edible plants is a must. There are even barks that can be eaten if times are desperate enough.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. We would like to eat things we will slightly like…at least. One half of the household is on low salt and the other half is supposed to stay away from sugar. Long shelf life food tends to be too salty.


    • gmhowell says:

      Those may not be useful metrics post TEOTWAKI. You will likely expend enough calories to erase concerns over diabetes. And your new, healthy lifestyle will also improve blood pressure and the like to the point where sodium levels are not your biggest concern. Those foodstuffs may also prove to be useful barter items for those who have, for example, an abundance of fresh produce and the inability to can/cure/preserve it.

      On Mon, Jul 3, 2017 at 4:05 PM, Dave Alexander & Company with David Edgren and Gus Bailey – The Artisan Craft Blog wrote:

      > Dave Alexander (formerly ukuleledave) commented: “We would like to eat > things we will slightly like…at least. One half of the household is on > low salt and the other half is supposed to stay away from sugar. Long shelf > life food tends to be too salty.” >


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