Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Ways to Resist the Deep State

Call it the Deep State, or the Political Class, or the Elites, or the Globalists, or whatever else you want.  It is all just different names for various aspects of the same beast. A group of people - powerful, wealthy, influential - who want to fundamentally change (hmmm... where have we heard that phrase before) America and Western Civilization. A change that will leave them permanently at the top, above the laws and struggles that the rest of us face, with a tightly-controlled underclass without any real freedom or economic opportunity. 

They want an end to any real borders and the idea of national sovereignty, which requires an end to patriotism. They want ultimate control of the economy, which means an end to private property rights and the rights of inheritance (except for themselves, of course, and they do write the laws, installing loopholes for their accountants and lawyers to use). They also want an end to cash, preferring a cashless, digital system to better monitor and control the populace. They also want to be unfettered by morality, thus desire to end traditional Christianity, as well as traditional family and gender roles. Besides, they see both the Church and the family unit as competition to their desired One World controlled by them.

One only has to pay attention to current events, as well as historical trends over the last few decades to see their plan slowly working out. The question is How do we stop their plans? How do way resist? 

Get out of the system and build self-reliance. 

The more we are part of the system, the more control they have over us, and the less ability we have to resist their plans. Many of us are already afraid to speak out. We are afraid of being labeled as racist, sexist, homophobic, Islamopobic, or otherwise a "hater," and having to face the possible consequences such as losing our reputations, our jobs, our businesses, or even our friends and family. Political correctness isn't about wanting people to be nice or polite to each other, it is about intimidation. Do what we say. Think as we want you to think. Or we will destroy you.   

How do we get out of the system? Getting entirely out of the system will be extremely difficult, if not impossible. But we can extricate ourselves from much of the system, if we are willing to do the hard work and sacrifice to do so. I've written about this before, but here is a recap:
  • Homeschooling is better than parochial & private schools is better than public schools. 
  • Working for yourself is better than working for a small business is better than working for a large corporation or the government.
  • Owning out-right is better than paying a mortgage is better than renting.
  • A credit union is better than a small regional bank is better than a big national bank. 
  • Paying cash is better than a credit card.
  • Going all cash & barter is best of all, but probably impossible in practical terms.
  • Taking care of your health is better than needing a hospital.
  • Entertaining ourselves (reading, family game night, hosting a bar-b-que, going bowling, going fishing, etc.) is better than relying on TV, the movies, and pop culture.
  • Living in a small rural community is better than living in a city is better than living in a mega-city.
And the list could go on and on. Its not easy getting out of the system, and may be impossible to do so completely, but shed yourself of as much of the system as you can. 

Become much more self-reliant. Be able to think for yourself, and do for yourself as much as possible. The more self-reliant you and your family are, the less you will be affected by what is coming, and the more you'll be able to resist. Do everything you can to build as much self-reliance as you can while there is still time. 

Thinking for yourself means uncluttering your mind of all the rubbish coming out of the mainstream media, pop culture, and academia. Turn off CNN and the late-night comedians. Tune out much of the current pop culture. Explore the alt-media, but don't just blindly accept what their pushing. Read a variety of sources, investigate, and think for yourself. Ask yourself questions: Does this really make sense? Is it logical? Does it fit what I already know to be true? Does it give facts that I can check, or is it just speculation? 

Self-reliance is also being able to do for yourself. Take responsibility for your own life. Don't sit around waiting for others, or the government, to do things for you. Get informed. Make your own decisions. Learn skills. Gain experience. (You may be interested in a previous article I wrote: What is Self-Reliance?)

Preparedness is a part of self-reliance. Yeah, I know. Being a prepper has gone out-of-style the last few years. Many preppers took vacations from prepping after Trump won. Others have been intimidated away from prepping and survivalism by the media's constant portrayal of us as paranoid nut-jobs (and potentially dangerous). But being prepared for life's emergencies, be it a house fire, an unexpected job loss, a recession, or even a war, is a major part of self-reliance. Get back to prepping.  Or get started for the first time if you are not one.  Check out my article A quick, no frills, down & dirty guide to preparing for the End for an outline of basic preparedness. Looking for more prepper & survivalist articles, check the archives of this website and check out PrepperWebsite.com for daily updated links.

Privacy is paramount. The more I study what is going on, the more I realize the importance of privacy, and how difficult it is to guard. Don't fall for the stupidity of "only bad guys have to worry about privacy." Think about and take steps to protect your privacy, both online and in real life.

How To Resist?  The best way to resist is to the the opposite of what they want. 
  • They want opens border, so fight for secure borders and controlled immigration.
  • They want to end national sovereignty, so fight for national sovereignty and a strong military. 
  • They want to ridicule and belittle patriotism, so be patriotic, and encourage others to be patriotic, also.
  • They want to end private property rights, so fight for laws protecting private property rights.
  • They want to restrict inheritance, so fight to end restrictions and taxation on inheritance.
  • They want to end traditional Christianity, so be a traditional, Bible-believing Christian, and get out of liberal/progressive churches.
  • They want to end the traditional family, so fight for it. 
  • They want to end traditional ideas of gender, so teach your children to be Real Men and Real Women.

Other Ideas for Resisting:
  • Elections matter, even if it is to only buy time, so get informed and vote! 
  • Control of the Judiciary is critical. Judgeships matter deeply.
  • Be very active in local politics and talk to local officials. Local efforts, where our "leaders" must deal with us face-to-face, can be very effective.
  • Influence your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, and fellow church members. Don't be cowed by political correctness.
  • Make use of Alt-Media (Whatfinger News, Voice of Europe, Breitbart, PrepperWebsite's AltNews Hub, The Liberty Mill, etc.) to stay informed. But always think for yourself.   
  • Don't be intimidated by the Big Tech social media companies. See my article Preparing for Big Tech Censorship for more on this subject.
  • Men, lead your family and teach your children. Don't give in to worldly ways, modern sensibilities, and political correctness.
  • Be especially wary of polices and laws that can be used as a "backdoor" to limit or take away our Freedoms. Hate speech laws allow the government to define "hate" however they wish. School anti-bullying policies more often are used to prevent your children from wearing a patriotic shirt ("bullying" immigrants) rather than stopping a real bully from taking your kid's lunch money. Red Flags laws have "gun confiscation" written all over them, especially in light of the APA's recent willingness to define traditional masculine traits as harmful.

What about armed resistance? I occasionally hear some talk about this, so let me quickly address it now. I don't believe we are there yet. Armed resistance is an absolute last resort, extremely difficult with deadly consequences. Most of us are truly not prepared to become guerrilla fighters, and likely would only get ourselves and our families killed. And lone wolf attacks accomplish nothing. In fact, they have the opposite of the desired effect, damaging their cause, and giving the government an excuse for yet more restrictions to our freedoms. 

I strongly believe in the right to self-defense, but I also strongly reject the unprovoked or unnecessary use of violence to achieve our goals. Concentrate instead on resisting in safer and more effective ways.

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Monday, February 18, 2019

72-year-old Catholic Priest Is Latest Victim of a Sharp Rise in Muslim Violence in West Africa

By Tim Gamble
2-18-2019

Vatican News is reporting that a 72-year-old Roman Catholic priest and missionary was killed by Muslim jihadists in the West African country of Burkina Faso on Friday, February 15.  Father Antonio C├ęsar Fernandez, a Salesian priest, was traveling by car with three companions when the group of Muslims attacked a customs checkpoint near the southern border. In addition to Father Fernandez, four Burkina Faso customs officials were also murdered. Father Fernandez's three companions survived the attack.

Burkina Faso is a Muslim-majority country with a significant Christian minority (about 23% according to government statistics).

This region of West Africa (Burkina Faso, along with Mali and Niger) has seen a sharp rise in Muslim extremist violence over the past year.

Including the attack that killed Father Fernandez, Burkina Faso has experienced seven attacks by Muslim jihadis in the last month alone, with 41 people killed and 11 injured, according to reports gathered by thereligionofpeace.com. In Mali, there have been four Muslim jihadi attacks over the last month,  killing 17 and injuring 36. In Niger, there have been five attacks by Muslim jihadis during the same time period, killing 24 and injuring at least 10. 

Worldwide persecution, violence and genocide against Christians, primarily by Muslims and communists, is largely ignored by the mainstream media in America and Europe.
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Thursday, February 14, 2019

The Three Ways of Self-Defense

In the survivalist community, when we think of self-defense, we typically think of guns & ammo, knives, and other physical instruments of combat. In this article, however, I want to take a step back from that, and discuss self-defense from a broader perspective. There are actually three ways of self-defense, of which combat is only one.

Combat, stealth, and diplomacy are the three ways by which we can achieve the goal of protection from others.

Combat

Combat as a means of self-defense is obvious. This is the guns & ammo, knives, and blunt-force instruments (including our hands) that we can use to protect ourselves. It is defense measures such as body armor and gas masks. Its also the health, fitness, training, and tactics we need to effectively utilize these tools for self-defense.

Re-read that last line: "Its also the health, fitness, training, and tactics we need to effectively utilize these tools for self-defense."  This is the key part of the combat way of self-defense that is so often overlooked. I encourage everyone to take their health and fitness seriously. And please realize that "training and tactics" is more than an occasional Saturday afternoon target shooting at the gun range. Start taking defense shooting classes, and planning with your family or group how you will handle certain self-defense situations. (Also, see the book Retreat Security and Small Unit Tactics by David Kobler (Southern Prepper 1) and Mark Goodwin for more information regarding group self-defense.)

I am a firm supporter of our right to self-defense and the Second Amendment which guarantees us the tools of self-defense. Notice I said "guarantees" not "give us." Our right to self-defense comes from God, and cannot be legitimately taken away by any government or worldly authority. I strongly urge you to stand firm on our rights of self-defense.

Stealth

Stealth as a means of self-defense covers a wide range of topics such as situational awareness, operational security, being the "gray man", and not making yourself a tempting target for the bad guys.  

I've written an excellent article on Situational Awareness and the OODA Loop, and a three-part article on Operational Security (OPSEC). Be read those articles if you haven't already. 

Think of the "Gray Man" as urban camouflage. The gray man knows how to fit in with his city, especially among his neighbors and co-workers. He doesn't stand out as anything particularly special or noticeable. He and his house, vehicle, and family blend in with their community. They look and act like they belong, and don't draw unnecessary or unwanted attention.  

Also, know how to not look like a victim. This is somewhat similar to being the gray man, but not exactly. Don't make yourself a target by wearing expensive, flashy clothes & accessories, or driving an expensive car.  Don't make yourself a target by appearing easy prey - wear practical clothes and shoes, pay attention to your surroundings, and walk confidently, head up.  Know, and avoid, bad neighborhoods and dangerous areas. This includes parking in well-light, highly visible areas when out and about town. Travel and shop in groups whenever possible, and let people know where you're going and when to expect you back. Don't bury yourself in your smart phone or IPod. Practice situational awareness. 

Diplomacy

Diplomacy is the third way of self-defense. A way that many folks in the survivalist community may not even realize is a form of self-defense. Worse yet, some may look down on it as a weakness, because diplomacy involves compromise and working with others, instead of just doing things our "my way, and only my way."

Think of it this way - if your goal is to protect yourself and your family or group from others, one way to do so is to turn your potential enemies into allies. This is not always possible, but when when it is, it will not only provide protection, but other benefits to everyone involved. 

Diplomacy is a lost art, if it ever was one, within the survivalist community. I don't remember ever reading an article or watching  video on diplomacy in my years as a survivalist. Maybe its because we tend to be staunch individualists, and not very trusting of others on top of that - which has a lot to do with why so many of us have so much trouble finding or forming community.

Diplomacy requires effective communications and tact, a willingness to consider the needs of others, the ability to compromise on non-essential aspects, and a desire to find and work towards common goals. It also means putting aside egos and pride in favor of doing what is in the best interest of all - not just ourselves.

Tact is the art of making a point without making an enemy. -- Isaac Newton


The Bottom Line

Each of these three ways of self-defense has its proper time and place. None of these three ways is appropriate or effective in every situation. None will be 100% effective all the time. They are three tools in your self-defense toolbox, and it is up to you to choose "the right tool for the job." Commonsense and an even temperament are required.
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Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Survival and Self-Reliance Skills to Learn

Everyone in the survivalist community seems to accept the maxim that "knowledge and skills beats lots of stuff every time." But what knowledge and skills do you and your family or group need? Here is my list of possible survival and self-reliance skills to learn, in no particular order. However, the last one listed is the most important, in my opinion):
  • Situational Awareness & OODA Loop (link to my article)
  • Operational Security (link to my article)
  • Shooting & Self-Defense
  • Home Security - more than just guns (recommended book
  • Adaptability (link to my article)
  • Gardening & Permaculture
  • Beekeeping (book recommendation for beginners)
  • Animal Science - care & husbandry
  • Canning & Food Preservation
  • Herbal Medicine & Lore (recommended book)
  • Foraging for Wild Foods (recommended book)
  • Water Collection & Purification 
  • First Aid & CPR - essential skills for everyone
  • Budgeting and Personal Finance
  • Living Within Your Means (frugal living)
  • Negotiating & Bartering
  • Weather Forecasting (link to my article)
  • Hunting & Fishing
  • Camping & Hiking
  • Wilderness Survival
  • Auto Maintenance & Repair (link to my article)
  • Farm Mechanics (recommended book)
  • Small Engine Repair
  • Carpentry & Woodworking
  • Home Repair and D.I.Y. Skills
  • Plumping & Electrical Work
  • Knife Sharpening & Tool Maintenance
  • Sewing and Clothes-Making
  • Accepting Personal Responsibility for Your Own Life 
Its impossible for one person to have all these skills, but between all the members of your family or group you can hopefully cover many of them and all the major ones. This list is not complete., of course There are many other skills that can be added. Suggestions? Please leave a comment below. 
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Monday, February 11, 2019

Formal Request Made for Treasury Sanctions Against Iranian Leaders for Sending Christians to “Torture Factory”

Three Judges and Infamous Evin Prison Targeted Under Global Magnitsky Act

02/11/2019 Washington D.C. – Today, International Christian Concern (ICC) submitted the names of three Iranian judges and the infamous Evin Prison to the US Treasury for consideration of sanctions under the Global Magnitsky Act. The names submitted are Judge Mashallah Ahmadzadeh, Judge Mohammed Moghiseh, Judge Ahmad Zargar, and Evin Prison itself.

February 11 marks the 40-year anniversary of the founding of the modern Islamic Republic of Iran. Since then, Iran has been ruled by elites who have fused hardline Islam with governance. Christians are viewed as a national security threat and prosecuted under these judges and then imprisoned in the infamous Evin Prison, commonly referred to as the “torture factory.”

These three Revolutionary Court judges, and Evin Prison, have a long record of human rights abuses toward Iranian Christians. The judges are responsible for convicting Christians on trumped up charges. They wield Iran’s legal system as a systemic tool of repression against religious minorities. Often, when Christians stand firm in their faith, Iran’s judges send them to the notorious Evin Prison, located on the outskirts of Tehran. Stories of those who survived Evin Prison are heartbreaking; the wide variety of abuse faced by inmates is chilling.

Claire Evans, ICC’s Regional Manager for the Middle East, said, “For the last 40 years, Iran has sought to control the souls of its citizens through hardline Islamic judges and the threat of incarceration at Evin Prison. Christians have faced degrading and inhumane treatment for no other reason than their faith. Yet, despite this intense persecution, they firmly held onto their faith. In response, these judges have only strengthened their resolve to further crack down on all practice of Christianity.”  

ICC tracked these religious freedom violations in order to build the legal background for the Magnitsky submission. The Global Magnitsky Act is a powerful legal tool which specifically targets individuals and entities to be sanctioned for human rights violations. The original legal framework passed in 2012 which specifically targeted Eastern European perpetrators. The act was later expanded to include all global perpetrators of human rights violations. For more information on the act, please visit the Treasury Department web page on the Magnitsky Act;

Matias Perttula, ICC’s Advocacy Director, said, The Global Magnitsky Act is a monumental piece of bipartisan legislation that empowered the fight for human rights around the world in a brand new way. This legal tool empowers the US government and the civil society community to target individuals and entities guilty of oppressing people and violating their God-given human rights with the full force of the United States sanctions capabilities.”

Those wishing to show support for the sanctions request may contact the Department of the Treasury's Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Office, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) by the following methods:

Toll-Free Hotline:  1-800-540-6322​
E-Mail Address:  ofac_feedback@treasury.gov
Postal Address:  Office of Foreign Assets Control
                             U.S. Department of the Treasury 
                             Treasury Annex 
                             1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW 
                             Washington, DC 20220

You may also wish to contact your House Representative and Senators.

SOURCES:  This article is from a Press Release from International Christian Concern dated February 11, 2019, and additional information from the US Department of Treasury website.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Times are good, so do these big projects now, before its too late!

Times are good, for the most part. But the wolves are howling at the gates, waiting for their chance to bring havoc and destruction.  Here are some things you might consider doing now, while you can, before its too late.

Buy guns for your children and grandchildren. When I was a kid, my grandfather gave me my first shotgun for Christmas. A few years later, he gave me my first rifle as a birthday gift. If you are thinking of doing something similar for your children or grandchildren, go ahead and do so now while you still can. The Elites haven't given up on gun control, and are getting sneakier by the day in how they are trying to get our guns.  

Even if your kids or grand kids are too young, go ahead and buy the guns now, so that you can give the guns to them when they are old enough. Of course, obey all guns laws, and make sure you instruct them in gun safety!(Check out the book "Toys, Tools, Guns & Rules: A Children's Book About Gun Safety" by Julie Golob.

Get a metal roof on your house. They are more costly than regular roofs, but they have several benefits, including increased energy efficiency (thus lowering your power bills), improved fire resistance, and great durability (life-expectancy of a metal roof is about 50 years).

Do any other home improvements that will either increase your homes energy efficiency (saving you money in the long run), or reduce future maintenance needs. Ideas include increasing your home's insulation, installing a wood stove, installing energy-efficient windows, switching to LED lighting, and upgrading to more energy-efficient appliances, including hot water heaters, heat pumps, stoves, refrigerators, etc. This last may be especially true if your current appliances are over ten years old. NOTE: Some home improvements may be tax deductible. See your tax professional for specific advice. 
 
Increase the food production capacity of your property. Prepare additional garden space, plant fruit and nut trees (which take several years to start producing, so you need to do it now, not later), or install a greenhouse.  In the future, you're going to need food a lot more than you will need a well-manicured lawn.

Turn your swimming pool into a water reserve, fish farm,  or even a greenhouse. Many years ago, a friend of mine bought a new house that had a swimming pool in the back yard. Since he and his wife didn't have kids, and cared nothing about having a swimming pool, they converted it into a greenhouse. I've heard of other people who turned their swimming pools into small fish farms. Search for the term "pool to fish farm" on You Tube.

You and everyone in your family/group should get a complete physical exam this year. Also, get eye and dental exams. It is much better to catch problems early, and deal with them now. I'm a bad example of what can happen when you avoid the doctor too long, as I wrote about in 2015.

Double your planned food- and water-storage. Based on what is happening in Venezuela, where people have been reduced to dumpster diving and even eating family pets to survive, I recommend even more food storage than you (or I) were already planning. Consider at least doubling what you think you need.

Overcome any addictions in your life.  Are you addicted to tobacco, alcohol, legal or illegal drugs? Struggling with porn or gambling addiction? Work on overcoming your addictions as quickly as possible. Yes, I know - easier said than done. But you don't want to be dealing with an addiction in the middle or just after of a SHTF event. You will have enough danger and stress just from the event, without having to add the dangers, and distractions of your addiction on top of that. Especially since you may not be able to "feed" your addiction after the event, and therefore will be dealing with withdrawal, which will have both emotional and physical complications.  

Get out of debt! Rather than using these good times of full employment and rising wages to take expensive vacations or buy a new sports car, pay off your car loans, credit cards, student loans, payday loans and other consumer debt. If at all possible, pay off your mortgage or at the very least refinance into a lower fixed rate if you can.

Check out Dave Ramsey's Debt Snowball Plan on his website for a great way to pay off debt.


Go ahead and move. Or buy that Bug-out property. If your future plans include moving to a better location, or setting up your rural homestead, now is probably the best time to do so. Find your preferred location, and start job and property hunting. 
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Thursday, February 7, 2019

An Easy and Free Encryption Method for Preppers (and Everyone Else)

--The following is for Windows systems-- 

You know, or at least have heard, that you should protect your information. You may have even heard the would "encryption." But, what exactly is encryption? And how do you do it? Do you need awesome tech skills or expensive software?  This article will quickly give you a basic understanding of encryption, and what you may need to encrypt, as well as reveal an easy and free way even non-techies can use encryption. 

What is encryption? Very simply, encryption is a way to "scramble" information stored on your computer, laptop, USB key (memory stick), or other electronic device so that no one without the encryption password can read it.  So, if someone steals your laptop or you lose your USB key, they cannot read the files that are encrypted on it, even if they otherwise can get into your device. There are several different methods and standards for encryption, but there is no need to understand the technical specifications in order to use encryption.

What needs to be encrypted?  How much of your information you decide to encrypt is up to you. I personally only encrypt personal information of a sensitive nature - tax and financial records, insurance information, medical information, my master list of passwords and pin numbers, contact lists, back-up copies of important documents such as birth certificates, CC permits, deeds, titles, driver's licenses and passports. I also encrypt certain "prepper" information that might reveal aspects of my prepping that I don't want to be public knowledge, such as planned bug-out locations, or guns & ammo, food storage and medical supply lists, among others. 

I see no need to encrypt my music files, old photos, or even most of the prepper-type videos, articles, and ebooks I've downloaded. In fact, probably less than 10% of my computer files are encrypted. 

Why encrypt important information? Privacy is important. ID theft has become a $20 billion a year industry in the United States. Then there is the government, Big Tech, large corporations, political & social activists, snooping employers, and even nosy neighbors that want to know everything about you, even (especially) the stuff that is absolutely none of their business. Preppers and survivalists also should be concerned about operational security. There are lots of legitimate reason to protect your data.

Are there drawbacks to encryption? There is one, and its potentially a huge drawback. If you forget or lose your password, there is no way to recover it. No one will be able to send you a link to change your password. Even the encryption software company or your favorite IT guy will not be able to recover or change it for you. If you cannot figure out your password, you will be locked out of your encrypted data forever.

Also, its worth noting that the encryption is only as strong as your password. Don't use an obvious or easy-to-guess password, such as your mother's or wife's maiden name, your dogs' name, your social security number, or even "password." Many security experts now suggest using a random sentence as your password, such as "IhatepurpleeggssaidSam" (that one is "I hate purple eggs said Sam" without the spaces) - make it something that you'll remember but no one else is likely to ever guess.

Encryption Software

There is a lot of encryption software out there, much of it you have to buy. For years, I've used Rohos software, which has both a paid and free version. The free version has less bells and whistles and you are limited, last time I checked, to two gigabytes of encryption (which should be plenty for most folks). Rohos worked very well for me, and it does let you create a hidden partition to hide your encrypted data (but that is not really necessary, in my opinion).

An Easy, Free Alternative 

I recently discovered that 7-Zip archive software allows for password-protected full AES-256 encryption. That is one of the encryption standards that I mentioned earlier. All that you really need to know is that it is considered one of the absolute best. 

Archive software, such as 7-Zip, is used to compress, or zip-up, files (and extract them later) in order to save memory space. Using 7-Zip to create and password protect encrypted files is easy, even for non-techies. Simply follow these steps:

1- If you don't already have 7-Zip, you can download and install it on your computer. You can get it at Major Geeks (a software site that I have used for years and trust). Go to https://www.majorgeeks.com/files/details/7_zip.html to get it. Again, it is free.

2- Once it is installed, navigate to the folder containing the files and folders that you want to encrypt. Select the files and folders that you want to encrypt, perform a right-click on them, click 7-Zip from the menu, and then click the "Add to archive" option. This works on your Windows-based desktop, laptop, or any USB key (memory stick). 7-Zip compresses and encrypts all files within any folder you select. I simply keep most of my sensitive files in the same folder, and and encrypt/decrypt that folder as needed. 

3- At the Add to Archive dialog box, you can either choose the default name in the top box, or type in a new name for the folder or file, and choose the destination for the encrypted file (the ... button to the right of the top line). Make sure the Archive format (next box down) is set to 7z or zip.




4- In the same dialog box, you add a password in the Encryption dialog in the right-column about halfway down, where it says Password and Re-enter Password. You need to remember this password! Just below that, make sure the Encryption method is set to AES-256.  Then click Okay. 7-Zip will then zip-up the encrypted file and place it wherever you choose in step 3.  Depending on the size of the files and your computer's speed, this way take anywhere from a couple of seconds to several minutes.

5- You have now created an encrypted file. At this point, you may want to delete/shred the original folder and start using the encrypted folder exclusively (make sure the password for the encrypted folder works first, of course). You may move this encrypted file around, place it on a USB key, make copies of it, or whatever you want to do.

6- To open and use the encrypted files, just right click the encrypted file, select 7-Zip, select Open archive, and the 7-Zip file manager will pop up, and use it to open the encrypted file with your password by choosing the file/folder you want, clicking on Extract (green dash), clicking Okay, then entering your password.




A final note: It is possible to accidentally delete files encrypted by this method the same way you may accidentally delete your non-encrypted files, so pay attention to what you're doing! Remember, if you accidentally delete something from your computer, you can usually recover it from your recycle bin.
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Muslim Genocide Against Christians, Ignored by MSM, Increased Sharply in 2018

Thousands of Christians Murdered by Muslims in Nigeria

Even though Christians are by far the most persecuted group of peoples in the world, persecution and genocide of Christians is rarely reported in the mainstream media. This is bacuase the two primary persecutors - Muslims and Communists - are "protected' classes within leftist idealogy, while Christians are often considered problematic at best, or actually despised at worst. Thus, mainstream journalists usually turn a blind eye to the plight of Christians around the world. A prime example is what is happening in Nigeria.

The Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED), has compiled data for 2018 on the ongoing genocide of Christians in Nigeria.  ACLED reported that approximately 1,930 brutal deaths were attributed to Fulani militants in 2018. In addition, Boko Haram was responsible for at least another 550 deaths according to records mainstained by TheReligionofPeace.com (TROP), bringing the total number murdered in the name of Islam in Nigeria in 2018 to at least 2,480. This was a sharp increase over the 1,900 total people killed in 2017 by both Boko Haram and Fulani militants (both groups are Muslim).

According to  International Christian Concern (ICC) "Due to ethnic tensions, religious differences, and a lack of economic resources, Fulani attacks against defenseless farmers in largely Christian areas claimed many lives and displaced tens of thousands."

"This, however, does not account for the dozens of villages that were completely razed and the more than 30 churches that were destroyed in Plateau State (of Nigeria) alone, as reported by Rev. Dacholom Datiri, president of the Church of Christ in Nigeria."

The Nigerian government has made little serious effort to address the ongoing genocide of Christians. Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari is a Muslim who has expressed support in the past for the "total implementation of Sharia Law" in Nigeria, despite the country's population being evenly divided between Christians and Muslims.

Below are the largest attacks that took place in 2018 (links to external news sites).
  1. April 23, 2018: Fulani militants attack in Benue State, killing 19 worshippers.
  2. June 23, 2018: Fulani militants attack in Plateau State, killing approximately 238.
  3. July 10, 2018: Fulani militants attack in Adamawa and Taraba States, killing 50.
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Wednesday, February 6, 2019

What if the Deep State wins? Survival in a Post-Trump Heavily Centralized Socialist Police State

Put aside your personal feelings, good or bad, about President Trump for a moment. The undeniable fact is, he won't be President forever. At some point Trump's Presidency will end - by impeachment, coup, death, defeat in 2020, or when his second term expires in 2024. 

Regardless of when or how Trump leaves office, the deep state, the political class, the DC insiders. the collectivists, the socialists, the political & social activists, and the anti-Western elites in business, academia & the media will still be there. They will not have given up. They will not have gone away. And they will be extremely enthusiastic and energized to get their agenda back on track. So, how do we prepare for the consequences of the elites and deep state regaining full control once again?


The Rise of a Highly-Centralized, Politically-Correct, Socialist/Fascist Police State

Its not hard to predict where the Elites are wanting to take us. Just look at where Obama was pushing us. And where Hillary was going to push us had she won in 2016. And where the Dems are openly saying they will push us. Just look at where recent social, political, business, and technological trends are taking us.  Just look at the open hostility towards traditional values and beliefs. Just look at the attempts by Big Tech to shut out conservative and Christian voices, or any voice that doesn't totally embrace the politically-correct leftist agenda. Just look at the messages being beamed into our heads on a daily basis by movies, TV, music, and other aspects of pop culture. And I could go on and on. Those of us who are not aware of where they are wanting to take us can only have chosen to be willfully ignorant. 

Here's what is coming our way once the Elites regain full control:

Economic Issues 
  • Higher taxes on the middle class (probably much, much higher) 
  • Higher taxes on big business and the wealthy (but with plenty of loopholes for their tax attorneys to wiggle through) 
  • Higher taxes on small business (but without the loopholes) 
  • Much higher level of environmental regulations 
  • Much higher level of social justice regulations 
  • Continuing growth of the National Debt 
  • Renewed attempts at Nationalized Healthcare 
  • All the above will lead to much slower economic growth and higher unemployment, as well as a shrinking middle-class
Loss of Privacy / Greater Police State Surveillance
  • Even greater power and influence for Big Tech and large corporations
  • Greater cooperation between government, Big Tech, and large corporations, to our detriment
  • Government will grandstand against Big Tech, but they want your data (and control over information) just as badly as Big Tech does, so they won't actually do anything stop Big Tech, as long as Big Tech mostly cooperates with their plans
  • New technologies enabling greater and more effective police state surveillance (facial recognition, closer monitoring of Internet activities, tracking of cars, cell phones, even chips in our trash cans to enforce environmental regulations, among other things)
  • A Chinese-style social rating system, in which you will need to exhibit certain politically-approved behaviors in order to get loans, get jobs, get a passport, get housing, get into college, and do almost anything in life - ultimate control by the government over you life
Loss of Freedoms (for our own good)
  • Loss of Free Speech rights, primarily through "hate speech" and "anti-bullying" laws, along with cooperation of Big Tech to suppress politically incorrect speech (another reason government will never really move against Big Tech)
  • Most millennials have already been turned against Free Speech, having been taught that it is just an excuse for "hate." This trend will continue.
  • Loss of Freedom of Religion (again, in the name of stopping "hate") along with continually redefining it as mere freedom of worship (see my 2015 article on this subject)
  • Loss of a Free Press as government allows Big Tech to do their dirty work by deplatorming, demonetizing, and otherwise freezing out all but the "main-stream" (corporate) media
  • Loss of Second Amendment rights (note the increasing popularity of "Red Flag" laws to get guns out of the hands of people with "mental health  issues" along with the American Psychological Association's recent declaration that "traditional masculinity" such as ambition and competitiveness is harmful - they plan to take away our guns without ever having to repeal the Second Amendment)
Other Issues
  • Weaker military
  • Open borders, uncontrolled immigration
  • Attacks on patriotism
  • Attacks on traditional Western culture, values and beliefs
  •  Attacks on the traditional family unit and traditional gender roles
I could make this list much longer, but you get the point.  Here is what should really scare you: None of the above is "conspiracy theory." It is actual trends and actual openly-stated plans. All of it has been happening, is still happening, and will only happen much more after the Elites regain control.

After Trump won the Presidency in 2016, most preppers breathed a sigh of relief and slowed-down their prepping, if not stopping it altogether. The reality is, Trump's victory did nothing more than perhaps buy us a little more time to prep. The dangers have only been delayed, not eliminated. 

Fighting Back Against the Elites and the Deep State

Do I think all hope is lost? No. But it is not going to be easy to stop what is coming. It is going to take more than just winning an election. The forces we are fighting are deeply committed, deeply entrenched, and highly motivated. They have power, money, and influence. And they have the numbers in key positions (they control most corporate boards, most of the mainstream media, most of academia, and most of the government bureaucracy).

Here is what we need to be doing to fight back: Get out of the system. The less dependent you are on the system, the more you will be able to resist what is coming. Elections matter, even if it is to only buy time, so get informed and vote! Control of the Judiciary is critical. Judgeships matter deeply. Be very active in local politics and talk to local officials. Influence your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, and fellow church members. Men, lead your family and teach your children. Don't give in to worldly ways, modern sensibilities, and political correctness.


Be especially wary of polices and laws that can be used as a "backdoor" to limit or take away our Freedoms. Hate speech laws allow the government to define "hate" however they wish. School anti-bullying policies more often are used to prevent your children from wearing a patriotic shirt ("bullying" immigrants) rather than stopping a real bully from taking your kid's lunch money. Red Flags laws have "gun confiscation" written all over them, especially in light of the APA's recent willingness to define traditional masculine traits as harmful. 
 
Survival in a Highly-Centralized, Politically-Correct, Socialist/Fascist Police State

Self-reliance is the key. The more self-reliant you and your family are, the less you will be affected by what is coming. Do everything you can to build as much self-reliance as you can while there is still time. I've written a lot on self-reliance, so check out those articles.

Get out of the system. The less you need the system, the less you will be controlled by it. Examples:
  • Homeschooling is better than private schools is better than public schools.
  • Working for yourself is better than working for a small business is better than working for a large corporation. 
  • Owning out-right is better than paying a mortgage is better than renting.
  • A credit union is better than a small regional  bank is better than a big national bank.
  • Paying cash is better than a credit card.
  • Taking care of your health is better than needing a hospital.
  • Living in a small rural community is better than living in a city is better than living in a mega-city.
And the list could go on and on. Its not easy getting out of the system, and may be impossible to do so completely, but shed yourself of as much of the system as you can. 

Privacy is paramount. The more I study what is going on, the more I realize the importance of privacy, and how difficult it is to guard.  I also think privacy is one of the most overlooked aspects of prepping. Think about and take steps to protect your privacy, both online and in real life.

From my article Operational Security - Part 3: Countermeasures:  "Children, especially young children, tell EVERYTHING to their friends, schoolmates, teachers, neighbors, and other parents (even if you've told them not to). Be especially aware of what you reveal to them, and remember that they do have ears and overhear a lot more than you might think. Remind them often that privacy is important and that they shouldn't share certain information with others. There have been many news stories in recent years of schools quizzing students about their home life, including asking about topics such as the parent's political views and if there are guns in the home. Tell your kids to answer "I don't know, you'll have to ask mommy and daddy about that" and to tell you who was asking those type questions. Review this with them often (they quickly forget)."

Also, check out my Urban Survival article on dealing with the busybody neighbor

Get back to prepping.  Or get started. Many preppers took vacations from prepping after Trump won. Vacation time is over. Get back to prepping now. And if you are not a prepper, become one.  Check out my article A quick, no frills, down & dirty guide to preparing for the End for an outline of basic preparedness. 

https://amzn.to/2SgQZDgTwo book recommendations for those just starting out in preparedness: 
1) How to Survive the End of the World as We Know It: Tactics, Techniques, and Technologies for Uncertain Times, by James Wesley, Rawles, and 2)  Countdown to Preparedness: The Prepper's 52 Week Course to Total Disaster Readiness, by Jim Cobb.

Prepare for Loss of Freedoms.  Preparedness is not just about providing for your physical needs. You need to prepare for the loss of many of your freedoms, too. What will you do if your traditional, Bible-believing church becomes a target of activists? (see my article Prepping for Persecution

What if Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and other social media suspend your accounts because of you posted a photo wearing a red MAGA hat? What if the alt-media outlets you use, such as Breitbart, Voice of Europe, or Whatfinger, are forced to shut-down, leaving you only MSM outlets? What if they deplatform and suspend your favorite prepping and survival You Tube channels, blogs, and websites? (see my article  Preparing for Big Tech Censorship)

What if a new "fairness doctrine" is passed shutting down talk radio? What if the political indoctrination of you kids in public school becomes even worse? What if your kid gets suspended for wearing a shirt with an American flag? What if your kid's school decides to do what is happening in some European countries, requiring kids to cross-dress as the opposite sex for a week to promote "understanding and diversity?" What if your state passes a "Red Flag" law and your liberal gun-hating neighbor reports you because you play in the church softball league? Don't laugh. Remember, the American Psychological Association just declared "competitiveness" and other traditional masculine traits as harmful, therefore a potential cause to take your guns under a red flag law!

We need to plan for these eventualities just as carefully as we plan our food and water storage. What plans have you made?

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Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Prepping for Persecution

Future crackdowns on Bible-believing churches by the government and other activists are likely in the coming years. The excuse will be stopping "hate speech," which is whatever government decides is "hate speech." 

Churches will also come under increasing attack by leftist activists, social justice warriors, and "triggered" individuals offended by traditional Christian teachings and values. These attacks will range from simple harassment to the life-threatening and even fatal. 

Here are some ideas on how Christians can prepare for persecution:

1 - Consider forming or joining a home church, even as you continue to participate in your larger church.  Alternately, having a small group Bible study that meets in private homes that could become a worship group (home church) may be very useful should the Church in America ever be forced underground. Your current church could & should work on such a "break up into smaller private house churches" plan that would be implemented under certain circumstances.

2 - Activists and others may infiltrate our churches to both spy on the "hate speech" and other disapproved activities within the church, as well as to sow discord among members. I suggest your church plan now for how to spot and deal with (remove) such individuals. This is actually a Biblical mandate.


"Reject a divisive person after a first and second warning, knowing that such a person is perverted and sins, being self-condemned." -- Titus 3:10-11
 
3 - A local gay-rights activist comes to your church and demands that your pastor/priest performs his gay marriage at your church. How do you deal with his demand without violating his "civil rights?"  A suggestion (not original with me): Before this happens, put in your church's official charter or by-laws that marriages are only performed for church members. In order to qualify, the activist must first join your church. Also in the by-laws, define how one becomes a church member.

For example, put it in writing now that a non-church member (in this case, the gay activist) must get baptized after first attending a series of classes, must make an honest confession of faith, must be a regular church attendee for an established period of time, must attend a series of confirmation classes, then make another public profession of faith to actually join the church.  Once they are church members, they are then eligible to gt married in the Church, provided they first attend a series of marriage counseling sessions, etc.


The whole process could be designed to drag on for a year or more, and to be very inconvenient for the gay couple. No way they'll go through all that, and if they do, maybe all that exposure to Biblical teachings will change them. God works miracles. Talk to a Bible-believing attorney about the wording, and do it now. You won't get away with doing it after-the-fact.

If your church is finally forced to perform a gay marriage, then dissolve the church before it performing the ceremony. You can then privately implement your house church plan. Figure out the details of how to dissolve the church now. Again, talk to a bible-believing lawyer.

4 - Be diligent about church security. Direct attacks are already starting to happen (shootings in SC, TX; fire bombs in WA, NY) and likely will increase in the future. Consider installing security cameras, which are not that expensive. A
multi-camera CCTV system with DVR recorder can be had for under $200 (here's one such system on Amazon). Many churches are also deciding to have armed security present during services. This can be as simple as having one or two church members carry during the service (of course, find out and follow your local gun laws), or as formal as hiring professional security. 

5 - Know and aggressively protect your First Amendment rights. If you don't know the important difference between Freedom of Religion (guaranteed by the Constitution) and Freedom of Worship (much weaker), please read my article on the subject for an eye-opening experience. 

There are a number of Christian law organizations specializing in providing legal services in defense of Freedom of Religion.
 

Legal Help with Freedom of Religion Issues

American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ)
Legal helpline: 1-757-226-2489
Website: http://aclj.org/

Christian Law Association (ALC)
Telephone: 1-888-252-1969
Website: http://www.christianlaw.org/

Liberty Counsel
Telephone: 1-407-875-1776
Website: http://www.lc.org/

Liberty Institute
Telephone: 1-972-941-4444
Website: https://www.libertyinstitute.org

Alliance Defending Freedom
Toll Free: 1-800-835-5233
Website: http://www.adflegal.org

 
6 - Finally, get right with God and know what you believe. Pray, read the Bible, study apologetics, and attend regular worship services. The more you know, the more mature you are in your relationship with God, the stronger you will be when facing persecution.

Got more suggestions? Great. Please leave them in the comments section!
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Sunday, February 3, 2019

How long do spices, herbs, and seasonings last?

I recently did a lot of research into the shelf life of herbs, spices, seasonings, and similar pantry items. This included looking up information on about a dozen websites, as well as several books (both preparedness-type as well as general cookbooks). Based on what I discovered and my own past experiences, I consider the following information to the "the final word" on the subject.

One quick note: Many, if not most, of the sources I found gave shelf-life dates much shorter than the ones I give here, while a few others gave dates much farther out. This confused me until I realized that they are considering self-life differently. The short-date folks gave shelf-life dates based on the fullness of flavor of the spice or herb. Once the flavor starts to fade even a little, they recommended tossing it out. This is fine for a chef at a four-star restaurant or a food gourmet, but I am concerned about long-term food storage, not impressing professional food critics. Most herbs and spices are still safe to eat and nutritious even after the flavor has faded a little. 

When it goes bad, it goes bad.

Regardless of how old or young that bottle of spice or dried herbs is, its perfectly good until it goes bad. By that, I mean there is no magic expiration date where something suddenly goes bad. If it hasn't gone bad, its still safe to eat months or even years past any expiration or best buy date. If it has gone bad, then its not safe to eat, even if it hasn't reached its official expiration date yet. You must use common sense. 


Pay attention to what it looks, smells, and tastes like. Look for bugs or signs of bugs such as webbing or droppings. Look for mold, fungus or mildew. Look for signs of vermin getting in to your food or spices (chew marks, droppings). Notice smells, too. If it smells bad or otherwise doesn't smell like it should, toss it. Same goes for taste. If it tastes bad, toss it. Common sense.

Stored properly, These Should Last Forever:
  • Salt
  • White Sugar
  • Brown Sugar*
  • Vinegar (white or apple-cider)
  • Honey
  • Vanilla Extract (real, not artificial)
*I've always believed brown sugar only lasted a couple of years, but I found several sources that stated otherwise. Brown sugar, same as white, potentially lasts forever if stored properly.

These Will Eventually Go Bad:
  • Other Extracts – Will store up to four years
  • Whole Spices – Will store up to four years
  • Ground Spices – up to three years
  • Dried Herbs – up to three years
  • Poppy & Sesame Seeds – up to two years
  • All other Seeds - up to four years
  • Seasoning blends w/salt as the first ingredient – up to four years
  • Seasoning blends without salt – up to three years
What about Baking Soda?

Preppers love baking soda because it seems to have a thousand and one uses in addition to baking. The good news is that baking soda is incredibly shelf-stable and should last pretty much forever for those 1001 uses. However, baking soda loses it potency for baking after about two years. So, the baking soda you are storing for baking should be rotated every two years or less.    

How to store herbs and spices properly:

Proper storage is simple. Keep your herbs and spices in a dark, dry place stored in air-tight containers. 

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