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Friday, January 9, 2009

Product of the Day

Jet Line Pocket Torch 98-101

I have 2 very similar models and carry 1 in my pocket always. I wouldn't be without it.



Homemade Deadfall Trap

Those of you who have read my stuff before may already know, that I plan to trap wild game, fish and fowl, to supplement my food storage and my four 4X8 raised bed garden plots. I don't think having one food source after the crash is wise as many things could happen to my primary food storage. Always have a plan B and a plan C to back up plans A and B.

When selecting materials from which to construct a figure 4 trigger, choose only dry, seasoned hardwood pieces that will not warp or shrink during the natural aging process. This is important, because once you get the trap set up you want to keep it producing for for the next several years.

The most crucial element, and the one most often overlooked by beginners, is the fact that all pieces which make up the trigger, should be squared with all bark removed. If this is not done correctly the trigger pieces will fly apart, when weight is applied, refusing to hold together because of the roundish trigger pieces...

The ground stick should have a forked bottom, so as not to let the trigger spin around and out from under the drop weight when the bait is taken. If allowed to turn the trigger may hold together and not trip when the bait is taken.

The best type of deadfall and the one I use most often, is what I call the log drop. The first step in building the log drop deadfall is to build a small pen about 14 inches square and 24 inches high with small sticks, trigs, leaves, grass or whatever is near by. The pen isn't being built to hold the animal, just to guide it into position where it can be effectively trapped. One side should be left open.

Next cut a small log of about four to six inches in diameter and four feet long. Bury this log part of the way in the ground in front of and across the opening of the pen. Now, cut four stakes which are about 4 feet long, drive the stakes two on each side of the bottom log. These stakes should be about thirty inches high after being driven into the ground.
Next cut a drop log that is from six to seven inches thick at the base and approximately twelve feet long. Set the figure 4 trigger with the drop log resting on top, and the bait stick slightly pointed back into the opening of the pen.

As you might have guessed, when the animal tries to take take the bait, it pulls the the trigger pieces apart letting the top log fall crushing the critter against the bottom log. This is quick and painless.

The bait should be fastened to the bait stick before setting the trigger under the drop log. To do otherwise can result in having the log fall on the trappers arm, which I have done and can tell you this is not at all pleasant.

Original: http://thesurvivalistblog.blogspot.com/2007/12/homemade-deadfall-trap.html

Link of the Day

Bulk supply of heirloom seeds for a long term food solution


http://www.survivalistseeds.com/

AIR

Check and Test your smoke alarms and change the batteries if you didn't when daylight savings time began.

Don't have fire alarms. Even if you rent, go buy one for each floor of your home, and install according to the directions, today.

Many weeks ago, I promised I would write about air, the most important element to survival after thinking. Let me begin.

We take it for granted, until you need it. Struggling to reach the surface of the lake as your lungs beg to exhale and breath fresh air, choking on the smoke as you run from your burning home, or drowning as your lungs fill with fluid as a toxic cloud drifts through your work place from a terrorist attack.

Air and the oxygen it contains is important to our survival, so how do you obtain air in an emergency?

You are going to have to spend some money and/or learn some techniques to use when you need air.

The first technique, I use when swimming underwater. As you swim underwater, CO2 (Carbon Dioxide) builds up in your lungs. If enough carbon dioxide enters your lungs, your body sends a signal to your brain to breath. If you slowly exhale, a little bit of the air in your lungs, some of the excess CO2 is released. The body's mechanism for breathing will be temporally overridden, so you can swim a little farther underwater.

Remember opinions, it has worked for me in a non-emergency situation; it might not work for you.

There is a similar method that SCUBA divers use, but this keeps their lungs from bursting. As the diver gets closer to the surface, the air in her lungs expand. The air must be exhaled to keep the lungs from over expanding and bursting. Remember this technique if you ever have to come up from a submerged wreck.

Your laying in bed and all of a sudden a loud noise sounds.

What's that noise?

It's the fire alarm!

Roll out of bed to the floor. Don't sit up because the hot, toxic smoke from the fire raises to the ceiling. This smoke can disorient you or cause you to pass out. Quickly leave the building.

There is more to surviving a fire, but this post is about air.

With that said, you can purchase a smoke hood. These hoods protect you from the toxic gases produced by a house or workplace fire. No matter the type, you want one that has a hood that will cover your head, is compact, and easy to use.

When I researched this a couple of years ago. The Evac-U8 was the best smoke hood. It had a hood that was totally clear. Filtered out carbon monoxide, and was easy to put on and seal.

Some of the masks had a hood that had a small viewing area, once the mask was on. Since hoods can shift, your view may be blocked as you try to escape. The Evac-U8 has a clear hood. If it shifts, you can still see.

Some masks have a head harness to place the filter by your mouth and nose. The head harness takes practice to use quickly. The Evac-U8 has no head harness. It has a nose piece to close your nose, and the filter that goes in your mouth.

Some smoke hoods don't filter carbon monoxide or are only good for 5 minutes. The Evac-U8 is good for 15 minutes.

Lastly, the Evac-U8 has a training hood for 1/3 to 1/2 the price of an actual smoke hood, so you and your family can train with the mask.

With all that praise for the Evac-U8. It has recently been recalled, by the manufacturer, for all models sold September 2000 to March 2006.

Remember opinions, the Evac-U8 is near the top of my list for must buys for my family.

Smoke hoods are only good for chemicals produced in a fire. If there is a chemical spill or a chemical weapons attack, you will need a protective mask.

Protective masks are designed to protect the respiratory tract, your esophagus and lungs, and the eyes. Avoid the ones that lack protection for the eyes. Some chemicals, like chlorine, will damage your eyes.

A protective mask protects you by using a filter. The filter traps the dangerous chemicals. Some filters are contained in the mask (internal) and some filters are external. The United States military M17 series (M17, M17A1, and M17A2) protective mask and the soviet M10-M mask have an internal filter. The British S10 and the US M40 protective masks have external filters.

The internal filters are very hard to change. There is also the chance of damaging the mask when changing the filters. You will also need another mask if you plan to change filters in a contaminated environment. The reason, you have to take the mask off to change the filters.

If you know any US military vets; ask her/him how hard it was to change the filters on a M17 series mask. It will be the same for a soviet M10-M protective mask.

The external filters are the easiest to change. Hold your breath, unscrew the filter, screw a new filter on, and clear the mask. 45 seconds and your done.

You can spend varying amounts of money for a protective mask anywhere from $10 for a surplus Israeli civilian mask to $300 for a new MSA Millennium CBRN protective mask.

Some people will tell you to totally avoid surplus masks. Some people, I'm one of them, will tell you that surplus masks are OK. They are reasonably safe if you know what to look for.

To determine if a protective mask is still usable you will have to inspect the mask.

Warning:

Make sure you can return the mask. If not, don't buy the mask. If you can't return the mask for a complete refund, don't buy the mask.

This is the first sign that a surplus protective mask is unserviceable (not usable).

First, look the mask over. Is everything there? Is it dirty? Smell like mold, mildew? If it does, send the mask back to the company where you bought it.

How old is it? 20, 30, 40, 50 years old, send it back.

Is it a Russian/soviet model? Send it back!

Next gently pull on the tabs that holds the head harness. The head harness is the thing that goes behind your head. It holds the mask to your face. If you see any cracks, rips or tears, send the mask back.

Check the buckles, if the mask has them, for bent, broken, and/or proper function (should not slip when holding the head harness straps) If not, send the mask back.

Next check the face piece. This is the mask itself. Any holes, cuts, rips, tears, splits, soft or sticky spots, send the mask back.

Next check the outlet valve disk. This disk closes when you breath in and opens when you breath out. You will usually find it around the mouth area on the outside of the mask. Make sure the outlet valve is present then gently take your finger and make sure the valve spins/does not stick. The outlet valve should also be flat, not curled or distorted. Some outlet valves are shaped like a cup, so be careful looking at the shape of the valve. If the outlet valve is curled, distorted, cut, and/or missing, send the protective mask back.

Next check the inlet valve. The inlet valve is usually near the nose. Make sure the outlet valve is flat, not curled, distorted, cut and/or missing. If the inlet valve is curled, distorted, cut, and/or missing. Send the mask back.

Next check the lens. The lens allow you to see when you are wearing the mask. Any scratches, broken lens, discoloration and/or missing lens, send the mask back.

The last item I will tell you to check is the head harness. Some head harnesses have nets, and some have pads with 6 to 8 straps coming off the pad. These straps attach to the tabs on the face piece. Insure the head harness has an even number of straps, free of cuts, tears, missing straps, and/or loss of elasticity. If you can't get a replacement, send the mask back.

Check any of the equipment that came with the mask. Does it have a hood? The hood should be free of holes, tears, rips and/or falling apart. Does it have a carrying bag? The bag should be free of holes, rips, tears, frays, and any other damage. If you can't get replacements, send the mask back.

This is a basic inspection of a mask. If any mask new or surplus fails any of the above requirements, immediately return the mask to the company you bought the mask from. Don't use this as an excuse to return a mask that has been in your possession for a year or that you screwed up.

The next thing you want to do is check the filters. Masks with internal filters are difficult to check. Be careful! Removing the filters from a M17 series mask and a M10-M mask can destroy the face piece; additionally, the filter may have mold and mildew from being wet.

No matter what, you will need new filters.

Why? Filters, once opened, are only good for a few days or weeks. The M17 series and M10-M protective masks are over 20 years old; the filters are at least that old.

External filters will also need to be changed, before you use the surplus mask. To check an external filter, make sure the can is free of dents, cracks, rust, and is still sealed. Once a filter is opened; it is only good for few days or weeks. (I am trying to find a source for a better estimate)

As you can tell, by now, finding a serviceable surplus mask is almost impossible because they are almost impossible to find.

This includes the Israeli German-made protective masks.

Generally, the Israeli masks you see for sell are returns/surplus. The Israeli government supplies masks to its citizens in time of emergency. Once the emergency is over or the mask is returned; they are put into storage. Once the shelf-life is reached, the masks and filters are sold.

So, what is a person/family to do?

Buy brand-new protective masks. You will need to replace these masks every 15 to 20 years and possibly sooner, depending on the mask's shelf-life. Same with the filters, but filters last only about 10 years.

OK. You don't have lots of money. You could buy an escape hood. These hoods are basic, bare bones protective masks. They get you out of the area.

And that is the idea. As a civilian, if a terrorist chemical weapon attack happens, you protect yourself and get out of the area. Leave the clean up for the other guy. This includes chemical spills.

And this brings up my next point. You don't need to buy a protective mask or a smoke hood. You just need to know the behavior of smoke and chemical agents. (Chemical agents is like the military term for the small group of chemicals that militaries use to cause death)

Smoke will rise to the top of a room. If you crawl on your hands and knees or do a belly crawl, you can avoid breathing the smoke. If you are outside, you can move away from the smoke.

Chemical agents behave differently. They are heavier then air, so they will sink to the bottom of a room. If the attack is on the first floor, move to the top floor. The higher the better. If you are in a warehouse, climb the ladder towards the roof or get on a scissor lift and raise the lift to its highest position.

Don't go into the basement, subway, or other below ground area during a chemical attack because the chemical agents will settle to the lowest area.

Recently, in the last 20 years, a group of school children were visiting a World War One battleground, I think in Belgium or France. Some of the school children entered a foxhole/below-ground bunker; they died or were injured from chemical weapon residue.

Some chemical agents have a certain smell. I heard a joke one time. "If you smell new mown hay, you're going to die anyway."

This is true and false. Chemicals must be at a certain concentration to harm you, but you will also have to use your other senses to detect a chemical attack/spill.

Rand has a report called "Individual Preparedness and Response to Chemical, Radiological, Nuclear, and Biological Terrorist Attacks." This report has some suggestions on surviving a terrorist's chemical weapon attack.

If you're outside and start seeing people start falling over for no reason, Run!

But where do you run to? The Rand corporation suggests moving to the closest building, close off the outside air by closing all window and doors and turning off the heating and cooling system and if possible move to a higher floor in the building, find an inside room or office and seal the room. You can use rags, rugs, paper towels, toilet paper, even your clothes (Better to be naked then dead. Save your shoes. You will probably need to walk to get help after the attack)

Remember what I wrote in Week Two-Shelter. Use plastic sheeting and duct tape to seal the room if you have it.

If you hear a load "Pop" and see smoke or vapors, Run! If you are outside follow the recommendations above.

If you are inside, Chapter 3-"An Individual's Strategy" on page 25 suggests some actions on your part. Make sure you read the report.

Guess what; there is a problem. The expensive mask you bought or didn't buy might not protect you from an industrial chemical spill, because filters are design for certain chemicals.

Guess what, again. The chemical spill may be so concentrated the mask and filter are overwhelmed by the chemicals. If you live near a gas pipeline, railroad tracks, a rail yard, interstate highway, chemical plant, or other industrial area, you might need to buy a self-contained breathing apparatus for everyone in the family.

The protective mask will also protect you from biological weapons or the flu, but a $200 mask is slightly expensive for protection from the flu virus. There are inexpensive masks such as the N95 mask by 3M (Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing).

The recommendation is to use a new N95 mask everyday, so everyone who leaves the house needs a mask. Do the math and buy them now, if you are preparing for a flu pandemic, because once a flu emergency starts there will be no masks at any price.

There are some homemade or other methods of providing air for you and your family. These methods lack certain criteria needed to totally protect you from a chemical spill/attack.

One is called extra air. It is used by scuba divers in emergencies if their air tanks run out. This lacks a hood/protection for the eyes. These tanks also have a limited air supply, usually counted in minutes.

Another method is a dust mask described in "Nuclear War Survival Skill." The dust mask is a soviet design to protect a person only from breathing radioactive fallout after a nuclear strike. They offer no protection from chemical agents or industrial chemicals; however, the dust mask may protect you from dust from an explosion or building collapse.

I call them respirators. They are protective masks that only cover the mouth and nose. They have no eye protection. Wearing goggles or other eye protection will still leave your eyes exposed to chemical agents or industrial chemicals.

Original at: http://gsiep.blogspot.com/2008/12/week-six-air.html

Prepare Yourself For Crime

By Alexis Moore


Big cities or small towns, it does not matter. What ever area you may be located in, preparing for crime in advance is a sure fire method for success. It will build confidence and educate rather than have you living in fear waiting to be a victim.

Since acts of violence usually happen instantaneously, we need to learn to have quick reaction time. While it is not pleasant to imagine yourself as the victim of a rape, aggression or assault, preparation must be done.

Mental preparation begins with planning towards a solution. Put yourself in the mindset of overcoming anything that comes your way, before it ever occurs. For example; if you are abducted, NEVER, I mean never let yourself be taken to a secluded location. This is most certainly the worst possible scenario. The "can not fail" attitude is a favorite here.

Preparation for avoiding crime should include a simple decision as to what weapon to carry. Whether lethal, such as a firearm, or a non-lethal weapon like a taser gun or pepper spray. This has to be a personal choice and should be evaluated in advance. Some factors to consider; legal risk, availability, what's legal in my area, and most importantly, your ability to use it effectively.

Many non-lethal self defense items are available to help you prepare for the worst, without the fatal consequences of firearms. Self defense tools range from taser guns to pepper spray. A significant benefit of using pepper spray is, it's a inexpensive, easy to use non-lethal self defense weapon that is a widely accepted means of self protection in most all areas. And most importantly, once proper training is completed, most will be able to use pepper spray in a effective manner to ward off violent attack.

Experts agree, it's always a good idea to practice with pepper spray, making it's use second nature. This is extremely important in a hectic situation. When testing your pepper spray, go to an open area and make note of the wind direction and your surroundings. Shoot downwind when practicing because the pepper spray can blow back in your face and severely injure you or bystanders.

Lastly, although a lot of self defense preparation is mental, we should be sure not to neglect the physical aspects of preparation & training. Your body conditioning can play a major role in some instances of self defense and preparing for attack. Lets face it, some cannot train physically due to handicaps of one form or another. However, I urge you do what you can - with what you've got.

Effective self defense success can be found with balanced training and knowledge.
With knowledge and self defense training you can fair a lot safer out there in today's world. As with most things in life the better prepared, the better the outcome can be.

Alexis Moore, an expert in self defense and writer for Security Saint. A self defense oriented virtual store where you can buy Self DefenseTasers , Stun Guns and pepper spray. Learn methods as how to protect yourself.

Original at: http://survivetheworst.blogspot.com/2008/10/prepare-yourself-for-crime.html

The Mormon Food Plan

I have a saying; those who prepare to survive deserve to survive. If you have the foresight to plan ahead for a possible end of the world as we know it situation, by learning needed survival skills and laying back supplies against the day of need, you deserve to survive. The thing is, a lot of people know of the likely possibility of society breaking down, but are turned off by the cost of laying back needed survival supplies. Should one die simply because of being poor? I think not. I am one of the working poor and some of the best people I have ever met are in the same financial condition.

My own food storage is based on the Mormon plan. The Mormon plan for stockpiling consists primarily of four basic food items: wheat, sugar and or honey, powdered milk and salt. From these four basic ingredients, a wide variety of foods can be prepared. The advantages of this plan is that these four food items are relatively inexpensive, readily available, storage is simple and the wheat, sugar and salt will store indefinitely under proper conditions. If you are as poor as I am but still want to prepare for the worst, then the Mormon food storage plan maybe you best option.

After you get the basic foods (wheat, sugar, powdered milk, and salt) in the needed proportions then it is a simple matter to add other foods as you get the extra funds. Pinto beans, mixed beans, rice, and split peas can be added with little expense and will add a little variety your diet. Just remember to date you beans, peas and rice and replace every two years, because most beans have a shelf life of only about two years. It is best to rotate you stock into your everyday diet and replace used storage foods with new food as it is used, this way you always have fresh supplies on hand.

Hard red winter wheat 400 lbs, powdered milk 75 lbs, granulated sugar 20 lbs, pure unadulterated honey 20 lbs, vegetable oil 5 gallon, dried split peas 20 lbs, pinto beans 20lbs, mixed beans 20lbs, iodized salt 20 lbs, baking powder 5 lbs, 4 #10 cans of powdered potatoes, live dry yeast, and 15 cases of assorted caned meats, soups, fruits, and vegetables. I have also put back a number of different types of herbs and spices, as well as a big bottle of multi-vitamin tablets.

Original: http://thesurvivalistblog.blogspot.com/2007/01/mormon-food-plan.html

Indoor Survival Garden

Keeping your garden safe and out of sight, from hungry looters and refuges after the collapse could mean the difference between life and death for the survivor. Having a traditional garden planted in rows is an open invitation to trouble, as every hungry unprepared person passing by will try to raid your garden, for a easy meal.

Sure you could just shoot them. But like I have said before, don't draw attention to yourself or your location. You want to look just as pathetic and unprepared as everyone else. If you can avoid a confrontation, by laying low and out of sight, you have won the fight already. Why risk a firefight that could lead to a family member being killed or wounded, if it can be avoided? We are not military planners and no one in our group is expendable.

Avoid planting in rows. The Three Sisters Garden works well to conceal your crop if planted in a way as to blend in with a stand of tall weeds. Don't make trails leading to your garden, that could be followed by someone wondering by. Don't leave trash around the site, and cover any exposed dirt after digging with leaves or whatever was covering the site before you started digging. Try to make your garden blend into it's surroundings as much as possible.

Produce can be grown in sunny rooms using natural light. One way would be to take the roof off of an old shed, barn, garage or storage building and replacing it with corrugated fiberglass sheets used to build greenhouses, you can get the fiberglass sheets at any good hardware store. The walls and floor of the building should be painted white or covered with aluminum foil, to reflect sun-light back onto the plants. I like the pant best, but the foil works well.

Any windows should be covered with heavy plastic, to keep anyone from looking in. Window blinds are a good idea. They can be worked in such a way as to let light in, and at the same time make it difficult for a passerby to look in.

The grow room should also have vents covered with screen cut into the walls to let air circulate. The vents should be cut up high next to the roof to keep anyone from looking in. Four 6x12 inch vents, will be fine for a modest size grow room of say 15x30 feet.

You can set the containers with plants on a table, so they can be closer to the source of light, the more light you can give the growing plants the better they will grow. If electricity is available the light can be supplemented by adding Fluorescent light fixtures, above the planting tables. Keep the light fixture about 2-3 inches from the top of the plants, moving the lights up as the plants grow taller, while maintaining the 2-3 inch distance. Remember, the more light the better.

With a little work the secret garden can look like only an old out-building, from the outside, but have a thriving garden hidden inside. Granted, if would be difficult to grow enough produce to feed a family using this method, it works best when used to grow smaller plants like tomatoes and peppers. This plan is best when used as a supplement to other gardening methods.

Original: http://thesurvivalistblog.blogspot.com/2007/01/indoor-survival-garden.html

pets

If anyone is not getting my e-mail, I apologize. It seems a lot of e-mail undeliverables are clogging my in box. Enjoy today's post, see you tomorrow.
SURVIVAL PETS
Much ado has been made about dogs and their role after a collapse. They are much more reliable than an electronic detection system. They can eat from commercial food stored in galvanized trash cans for a time then survive off the waste products of hunting/herding/butchering as they have done through the ages. I do not dispute that dogs are a needed tool. Probably the only argument would be what breeds are best for certain tasks.

I don’t much care for dogs before the Apocalypse however. They are dependable and faithful and big pains in the ass. Granted, they are more reliable than a spouse. But they demand about as much attention. Oh, look at me. I love you. Play with me. Pet me. Devote all your attention to me. And the dog is no better. Another thing I dislike about dogs is that they are not good indoor pets. Oh, they’ll adapt to circumstances. But without other dogs to interact with and without room to roam and dirt to dig in and whatever else dogs do to pass the time, they just don’t turn out right. They become dysfunctional.

If you are going to have a dog, get more than one. And make sure they have an area to play in. Dogs act stupid, but they have a great life. You eat, sleep, crap under the rug and get petted by the entire household. What could be better? The only thing you have to do in return is occasionally growl at a stranger walking by on the sidewalk to let everyone know you are on the J-O-B. They aren’t stupid enough to want to be human. That is too hard of a life. Don’t treat them like they are one of us. Give them a fellow dog to play with, give them room to run outdoors, act like their pack leader and not their buddy.

Keep the dogs outdoors where they can soil themselves instead of the rug and actually chew on someone trying to break in. When you have more than one you increase your chances that one will survive an attack and foil the attempt to invade your domicile. For indoors, get a couple of cats. You need them more than they need you. Make sure that your pantry and food storage are accessible to your feline friends so they can make short work of any rodent problem. And the cats don’t even need to be hungry to kill mice or rats. They love to kill things. So don’t de-claw your cat or pull its teeth. Not only is it cruel but it lessens the effectiveness of your hunter.

Look, as your dog is sitting outside awaiting any break in your storage food is sitting inside providing a meal to fury little bastards. Oh, you moan, I hate cats. They are mean and ignore me! Get a friggin friend at work or a girlfriend. A cat is not there to like you. They will only grudgingly accept your presence and only if the mood strikes them, and that is only after years of you feeding it and changing its litter box. Cats will allow you to stay in your own home if you are lucky.

Besides providing a needed service, cats are also great companions. You need to be reminded on a daily basis that you are nothing special. A cat will do that. This will keep you humble and then you won’t get into trouble with an inflated ego or an exaggerated sense of importance. With a dog you might make the mistake thinking others will actually listen to you like the dog does. And cats clean themselves. They can cuddle you on a cold night and you won’t catch anything. A dog is interested in only cleaning two things, its crotch and bunghole. Then they want to lick your face immediately after.

For any pet food I would dust with food grade diatomaceous earth to control insects and store in a metal can. At least a years worth, pet food really is quite cheap. Then rotate. And make plans now on how you are going to feed your pet after it runs out. If meat is going to be scarce you and your pet will be in direct competition for that meat. A cat can usually fend for itself but may not stay at your house to do it. That is what you are really doing is bribing it to stay and be a mouser. Even if you have all your grains stored in metal, after the collapse you will be harvesting foods that won’t have proper protection. Then you really need the cat around.
Another question is going to be should you fix your cat? I always do as a cat in heat is a rude irritating unstoppable idiot. Which is fine for now. But consider you will want a reproducing herd after TSHTF so there will always be some around to fight rodents. END

Original: http://bisonsurvivalblog.blogspot.com/2006/11/pets.html

INDEPENDENCE AND YUPPIE LIFESTYLES

For those of you sheltered individuals out there, a Yuppie is a term from the eighties meaning Young Urban Professional. They were the go-go crowd determined to make enough money to live the good life. The job was their life, it was the means to achieve wealth and luxury living and security. Today we have such marvelous creatures as Tinks, two income no kids. About the same thing but less stressful since a major expense is missing ( not that kids are expensive, the slums are full of them- most Americans just can’t live frugal ) or at least a source of stress. Yuppies to me have always represented the Dark Side of working. Puritans worked hard and spent little. About like the Chinese immigrant work ethic. Save the money to loan to other family members so they can start their own business, then they do the same, etc. Prosperity and financial independence without bankers.

Today I call the average working professional Yuppies. Those that just work for luxury. I call Soccer Moms Yuppies. The fancy car and clothes and snobbish attitude. My crap don’t stink, I have easy credit so I can afford the appearance of wealth and I’m better than you so there! The local gathering place for these insufferable idiots is at Costco. If you threw three Molotov cocktails into the parking lot you could easily do over one hundred thousand dollars of damage immediately. These are the kind of people I wish to suffer through social collapse from Peak Oil just because their SUV’s mean so much to them. Am I a bit envious? Perhaps. I can’t force myself to screw others over for wealth such as lawyers, civil servants or building contractors do. Mostly I just hate their class snobbery.

One thing Yuppies will never be is independent. They are addicted to the show of wealth that can’t be compromised by used cars or clothes or solar panels on a trailer roof or a house under two thousand square feet or even a dirty wood burning stove. Luxury can’t be compromised. Their idea of energy independence is buying a two thousand dollar pellet stove. I love the things too but they are strictly a Society Stable product since you can’t go into the woods and cut yourself a few bags of pellets. And by the way, Lowe’s pellet stove is two hundred bucks higher this year. And still the cheapest one around that I have seen.

The two items you must compromise on if you wish to achieve financial independence and future security are your home and your car. You can’t be free with a mortgage and a car payment. And even if you build yourself you need a mortgage if you build to code. Only unconventional structures off the radar of the local zoning board are cheap enough to construct. That is the only reason I recommend trailer living as it is usually legal and hassle free, at least compared to any other cheap shelter. And bicycle transportation is a hassle most times of the year but at least it frees you from a car. No strategy is foolproof or free of pain or compromises. Even the rich retreaters are faced with acquisition debt, lack of security for a remote retreat and the problems of getting there during social chaos.

The simple fact is that if you wish to drop out of the rat race or achieve financial independence or future security at a time when government welfare plans ( to include Social Security and Medicare ) will soon face bankruptcy which can only be prevented short term through massive inflation so as to pay off the voting recipients in nearly worthless dollars, then you must live a less conventional lifestyle. You can’t have your cake and eat it too. A mortgage and car payment alone are too much other than for dedicated wage slaves. Any other debt on top of that means you will never escape. You must free yourself of the golden handcuffs you have placed on yourself.

Let’s say you are a seller on E-Bay of ceramic widgets. You think this is your path to financial freedom ( we are assuming they sell ). But you need to sell at least a thousand widgets a month since you must pay the mortgage and the SUV payment and a few credit cards and buy new clothes and shop at the trendy organic foods market. If you ever sell less you are screwed. If you lived in a shack on a paid for lot and pedaled a bike to Wal-Mart for shopping you would only have to sell a hundred widgets a month. The extra sales would go into real goods such as precious metals and food storage and ammunition. Rather than making the bankers rich.

Look, the housing bubble did few people a service. A few bought $50,000 houses and sold them for $250,000 and moved out of California and screwed the rest of the western states over by artificially increasing local real estate costs. The rest are buying $250,000 houses that are using the same land and labor and materials that $75,000 houses used ten years ago. You are not getting your monies worth by a long shot. These are Gum & Glue houses that won’t last past the first buyer without extensive continuous maintenance. Is it worth thirty years of your life to live in that kind of “luxury”. Artificial and overpriced. And totally dependant on our economy never having a hiccup. And cars are shooting up in price without quality outside of Asian imports. No way are they worth thirty grand. It is sheet metal and an engine that guzzles a depleted resource.

If you want security it does not lay with worthless Greenbacks and a job subject to importation. It is living poor. Live poor, earn middle class ( live on less than your paycheck ). And be secure. The price is giving up luxury and the conventional lifestyle.
END

Original: http://bisonsurvivalblog.blogspot.com/2006/11/yuppies.html

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