Friday, September 27, 2019

Intermediate Prepping - Your next steps after covering the basics.

You've been prepping for some time now. You're no longer a newbie, and you have the basics covered. Now what?

No Longer a Newbie

Those new to prepping should concentrate on preparing for short-term emergencies, ranging from a few days to a few weeks. This will mostly consist of stockpiling maybe a month's worth of food, water & other supplies, acquiring some basic gear such as first aid kits, fire extinguishers, emergency radios & flashlights, and acquiring a few skills such as first aid and a self-reliant mindset. You should have also developed a family communications plan and a short-term bug-out plan, including where to go and how to get there. This is a great start, better than 90% of the general population. (To make sure you've covered these basics, see my articles New to prepping? Here are your next steps and A quick, no frills, down & dirty guide to preparing for the End.)

Now its time to turn your attention to longer-term emergencies, which may last months instead of just days or weeks. This next level of prepping & survivalism is what many folks call Intermediate Prepping. There are no hard and fast rules on what exactly constitutes intermediate prepping, other than it builds on the basics that you (hopefully) covered in the beginning of your prepper journey. 

My take on intermediate prepping is:
  • to expand your preparedness stockpile
  • to develop the plans & skills needed for a longer-term emergency 
  • to develop a survival mindset that you incorporate into your everyday life
Expand your preparedness stockpile.  

One of the first things you probably did early in your prepper journey was to build a prepper stockpile. You acquired at least a couple of weeks' worth of food, water, and other supplies. This should carry you through a short-term event, such as a winter storm, when you can't get to a store for a brief period of time. But, what if the emergency lasts longer than a few weeks? Now is the time to expand your prepper stockpile from a few weeks', or even a couple of months', worth of supplies, to at least six month's worth. A year's worth is even better.

This is typically the easiest part of prepping, as it usually amounts to just buying more stuff (but coming up with the money to do so can certainly be challenging). But as you move beyond just a few weeks' worth of stuff, you are going to start to encounter some problems. Here are a few ideas on how to handle those challenges:
  • Frozen and refrigerated foods don't count for long-term food storage. This is because once the power goes out, they will quickly go bad. Instead, you will have to depend on foods that don't require electricity to store, such as canned and dried foods.
  • Perishable items, such as milk, cheese, butter, and eggs are problematic for long-term storage. Your best bet is powdered, dehydrated or freeze-dried products, but this option an be expensive. For my money, Augason Farms has the best selection, good quality, and are reasonably priced. 
  • Its easy to get caught up in food & water storage and forget about other supplies. Make sure to stock up on cleaning & hygiene supplies, first aid supplies, medicine & medical supplies, batteries, sturdy clothes & shoes, ammo, and repair supplies (tools, nails, screws, duct tape, gorilla tape, sewing supplies, etc.), and other supplies you may need.
  • Don't forget about your vehicles. Learn how to safely store gasoline, and be sure to stock up oil, filters, transmission fluid, brake fluid, spare wipers, and other supplies to keep your vehicle running as long as possible.  
  • Water, being very bulky and heavy, is difficult to store in large quantities. You can buy and install large water tanks, but most folks will need to learn how to collect and treat water for a long term solution. Make sure you have the supplies to do so.
Check out my article Emergency Water Storage for more on water storage.

Develop the plans & skills needed for a longer-term emergency.

Intermediate preppers need to understand and plan for the potential consequences of a "grid down" situation, particularly one that lasts for months or longer before things even begin to return to normal.

A disaster usually will result in the temporary or permanent loss of many of the “comforts of civilization” we are used to enjoying. Comforts of civilization are those things that are provided to us by modern civilization that we tend to take for granted. It would be difficult for most modern people to provide many of these things for themselves, especially without learning new skills, stockpiling tools and supplies, and preparing well in advance for their loss.

These comforts of civilization we may lose include:

   * Readily available running water that is safe to drink.
   * Readily available food from stores and restaurants.
   * “Flush and forget” human waste disposal.
   * Modern medicine and health care.
   * Readily available electricity for lighting, heating, cooling, cooking and hot water.
   * Readily available natural gas for heating, cooking and hot water.
   * Readily available liquid fuel for cars, trucks, tractors and planes.
   * Instant long distance communication (phones, email, etc.).
   * Ready access to education.
   * Ready access to emergency services such as fire, police, and paramedics.
   * Most modern luxuries (television, IPods, computers & the Internet, etc.)
   * Ability to spend money without having it (credit cards, mortgages, installment plans, etc.)

How will the loss of these modern luxuries affect you and your family? When the tap water stops running, and your water storage is used up, what will you do then? (Answer: Before it happens, learn various ways to collect and treat water.) When your food storage runs out, and the grocery store shelves are still bare, how will you feed your family? (Possible answers: Before it happens, learn how to garden, hunt, fish, forage for wild edibles, raise chickens for eggs & meat...) 

How will you stay warm and heat your home without electricity or natural gas? How will you buy things when cash is worthless and the credit card and banking system is down? These are the type of questions you need to ask yourself, and start making contingency plans now before it happens. These contingency plans will likely require learning new skills, making attitude adjustments, and acquiring special gear and supplies.
Develop a survival mindset.

Sure, part of developing a survival mindset is simply realizing that you do need to be prepared for future emergencies, but there is so much more to it. Survivalism is, at its heart, about rejecting the modern way of thinking - dependency, entitlement, selfishness, obliviousness, and a "sheep mentality" - and embracing a mentality of self-reliance, personal responsibility, industriousness, awareness, and perseverance. It is also about incorporating this new mindset into your everyday life, not just during an emergency.  

It is difficult to develop and practice these traits in a modern world that seems geared to the opposite. Here are some articles that may help:
Fernando "FerFAL" Aguirre, author of the best seller The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse and a long-time advocate for preparedness & survivalism, has a new book out. Street Survival Skills: Tips, Tricks and Tactics for Modern Survival is based on his experiences during and after the economic collapse of Argentina. In it, he explains practical urban survival skills such as Situational awareness, home and street security, everyday carry, dealing with blackouts, survival kits and weapons, how to fight with a gun, knife, bare hands or improvised weapons, how to respond against a terrorist or mass shooter, barricade doors or how to breach them, how to stop a bleeding and carry a casualty, defensive driving, home remedies and many others practical skills. 

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Sunday, September 1, 2019

Real History Book List

History, more than any other subject, has been purposely watered-down by political correctness and corrupted by leftist ideology. Real History is no longer taught in schools. Yet, a correct and accurate understanding of history is essential. Here is a list of books that do teach Real History, without leftist ideology or political correctness.

Paul Johnson's book,  A History of the American People, is a must-read for all patriotic citizens of the Republic. In it, Johnson states: "The creation of the United States of America is the greatest of all human adventures. No other national story holds such tremendous lessons, for the American people themselves and for the rest of mankind." Johnson has written numerous other history books, all well-researched and presented in a way to be both educational and enjoyable.

A Patriot's History of the United States - Over the past decade, A Patriot’s History of the United States has become the definitive conservative history of our country, correcting the biases of historians and other intellectuals who downplay the greatness of America’s patriots. Professors Schweikart and Allen have now revised, updated, and expanded their book, which covers America’s long history with an appreciation for the values that made this nation uniquely successful.

The Patriot's History Reader: Essential Documents for Every American - The Patriot's History Reader goes back to the original sources-the documents, speeches, and legal decisions that shaped our country into what it is today. The authors explore both oft-cited documents-the Declaration of Independence, Emancipation Proclamation, and Roe v. Wade--as well as those that are less famous. Among these are George Washington's letter to Alexander Hamilton, which essentially outline America's military strategy for the next 150 years, and Herbert Hoover's speech on business ethics, which examines the government's role in regulating private enterprise.

I've been looking for a good, accurate history of the Crusades for a long time. I wanted a book that gives the #RealHistory of the Crusades, not tainted leftist historical revisionism. It hasn't been an easy task, but in Dr. Thomas Madden's book, A Concise History of the Crusades, I finally found such a book. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for those folks who want to understand the reality of the Crusades without the anti-Western, anti-Christian bias that marks much of the academic world over the last 50+ years. Dr. Thomas F. Madden is Professor of History and Director of the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies at Saint Louis University. Schweikart (this time with Dave Dougherty) has written a two-part history of the world to compliment the history of the United States mentioned at the top of this article. Volume one is Patriot's History of the Modern World: From America’s Exceptional Ascent to the Atomic Bomb: 1898-1945. Volume two is Patriot's History of the Modern World: From the Cold War to the Age of Entitlement, 1945-2012. These are an excellent overview of world history from a perspective unbiased by political correctness and leftist idealogy. Constitution ROCKS! & Our Presidents ROCK! are excellent for middle school & high school ages, but even adults will learn from them. I've written full reviews of both, which you can find by clicking the titles above, or click the pictures to go straight to their pages on Amazon., The Last Best Hope (V. 1 - From the Age of Discovery to a World at War and V. II - From a World at War to the Triumph of Freedom) is a two-volume history of America by Dr. William J. Bennett, who writes patriotic history that reflects his deep respect for America's traditions and founding values. Intended as American history text books for private high schools & homeschools. Path to Tyranny: A History of Free Society's Descent into Tyranny by Michael E. Newman does an excellent job of proving that free societies throughout history lose their freedoms and end in tyranny once their populations realize they can utilize the power of government to give themselves benefits at the expense of others. Well written for the general reader, with in-depth footnotes for scholars, this is an excellent survey of the world history of freedom and tyranny. Angry Mobs and Founding Fathers: The Fight for Control of the American Revolution, Michael E. Newman argues that the American Revolution was fought and won by two groups working together- angry mobs and founding fathers. The resulting nation (really a loose confederation of independent states) was "anarchic and chaotic" and a dismal failure, until the founding fathers disposed of the angry mob and their Confederation, creating instead the world's most successful Republic ever, through the Constitution and Bill of Rights. Wonderful, and often overlooked, history of America's founding. the Record Straight: American History in Black & White, by David Barton, tells the stories of many forgotten black heroes of American history. Forgotten largely because their stories are not politically correct, and therefore don't fit modern progressive narratives regarding race relations. This is real history that the educational establishment refuses to teach, and that you will never hear on a Black History Month public service announcement.

Original Intent: The Courts, the Constitution, & Religion, by David Barton, takes on one of the most covered-up aspects of American history - the role religion played in our nation's founding and the actual intent of our founders regarding Freedom of Religion, as well as the role they intended for the judicial system. Heavy on facts and actual documentation, this book is a must have for Christians wishing to defend the Freedom of Religion they enjoy.
The Federalist Papers, by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, & John Jay, and the Anti-Federalist Papers, by Patrick Henry & others, were the embodiment of the debate over establishing the new Constitution, and lead directly to the Bill of Rights. This is primary source material for understanding one of the most pivotal points in American history.

Legends and Lies: The Real West is a fascinating history of many of the legendary characters of the Old West, including Kit Carson, Jesse James, Doc Holiday, Buffalo Bill, Annie Oakley, and the man who was the real Lone Ranger, among many others. This history looks past the legends, revealing the real people behind them. Perfect for fans of the Old West.

The American Patriot's Bible, available in both the KJV and NKJV, contains 48 long articles (4-pages w/pictures), along with hundreds of shorter articles, notes, and quotes connecting the Bible with America's religious founding and heritage, something that is not only completely ignored in our public schools, but in fact is treated as criminal. The hardcover edition is not only nice enough to serve as a family bible, complete with pages for genealogy and family history, but is a great resource for learning the religious heritage of America that you were not taught in school.
George Washington's Sacred Fire is a fantastic biography of George Washington, which firmly settles any doubts over the depth and importance of Washington's Christian faith and values (progressives have long tried to deny this aspect of Washington). Extremely well-researched with extensive footnotes, this is also a highly readable and enjoyable biography.
Other Recommended Biographies of America's Founders
(click on the picture to go to the corresponding Amazon page for more details)


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