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Saturday, November 27, 2010

Guest Post: P.O.W. Camp Barter Items


     If you like reading about  barter  goods, you will find more articles   here.
     During a crisis or collapse, many would have to resort to barter.
     Barter has been discussed back and forth with everyone throwing in their two cents on what would be good barter items.
     In German POW camps during WWII, the top three barter items were:
  1. Cigarettes.  Keep in mind that they do turn stale.  Additionally many less people smoke today than sixty five years ago, on a percentage basis.   Store tobacco seeds and then grow it after the SHTF. 
  2. Soap.  This is going to be one of the things that everyone forgets about, (probably because of its non-glamorous nature) or does not have enough of.   I would rather stock lots of bars than try to make it.
  3. Chocolate.  Definitely!  There are hordes of sugar addicts today.  Take a look at the candy aisles at Wal Mart.  If they were not selling all that junk, it would not be there.  Stock lots and lots of chocolate!  And sugar!   Learn to be a Bee keeper.
     Of the three items, using a contrarian viewpoint, soap would be the best item.  How many times have you read that someone is stockpiling bars of soap?  Hardly ever.  Stock the item that will be in short supply and high demand.

     If you liked this article please visit: New Dawn Survival.
     I want to thank Andrew for allowing me to post this at his website.

9 Things to Consider Before You Ever Grow a Survival Garden

 In a long term emergency, people will not have the time to leisurely work in the garden.  Instead, they will be gardening for survival, along with a long list of other daily survival chores.  Survival gardening will be labor intensive, and large amounts of energy (sweat) will be needed to have the garden produce enough food for the present and enough to  put away for the future.  In exchange for your energy and time, you will want a survival garden that will provide your family abundantly with food.  Keeping certain factors into consideration before starting a large scale garden will help you get the most out your time and energy, provide you and your family with the healthiest vegetable varieties, and help you find the easiest types of vegetables to grow. 

Variables to Consider When Growing a Survival Garden

  • A survival garden should incorporate dependable and easy to grow vegetables that produce more than one harvest or bears more than one fruit per plant. 
  • The vegetable varieties should be types that the family will eat.  It’s not worth the trouble of growing this food if your family will not eat it.
  •  Grow vegetables that have high amounts of nutrition and vitamins, as well as finding varieties that possess medicinal properties.  According to medical experts, green vegetables such as broccoli, Brussel sprouts, Lima beans, peas, asparagus, artichokes, cauliflower, sweet potatoes and carrots are some of themost nutritious vegetables in the world.
  • Find varieties that grow naturally in your area.  Environments where plants grow naturally mean that less time and effort will be needed in raising them.
  • Need for excessive fertilizing to produce decent sized produce is a waste of precious resources.  There are exceptions to this rule of course.  Such as, if the fertilizer used will help the plant produce many fruits or vegetables.
  • If space is limited, plants that take up as little space as possible, but produce abundantly will make for a good investment.  Furthermore, finding gardening techniques such as the Three Sisters also makes good use of space.
  • If fuel is needed to harvest vegetables, the noise could be an indicator of a thriving homestead, and an OPSEC nightmare.  As a result, the home could be frequented by unwelcome guests.  Additionally, this type of farming method would consume large amounts of fuel. 
  • Find vegetables that can do well for storage.  Vegetables such as potatoes, onions, and root crops like beets and carrots that store well can be used when the weather is too cold to grow.
  • Varieties that serve more than one purpose is also an efficient use of space and resources.  Varieties such as root crops or broccoli leaves are varieties where the greens can be fed to livestock.  In addition, some survivalists agree that yellow dent corn has a multi purpose use of making grain and feeding livestock.  But this crop requires a large amount of land, resources such as fertilizer, and energy to grow this plant to fruition.
Preppers that are stocking up on non-GMO or heirloom variety seeds to grow, should also have adequate knowledge in gardening skills to get these varieties to produce vegetables and fruits.  However, before a survival garden is started, sitting down and planning the garden and considering different factors will save headaches later on.  Likewise, researching how much food a family will need and how much of the time/energy yield will be needed to produce these vegetables is a valuable use of time.  Also, keep in mind that you know your family best.  You know what they eat, you know what they will not eat.  Come to your own conclusions as to what type of survival seed varieties are best suited for your family and the environment you live in.

"Bugout Versus Hunker" Short Story by Christopher Young - Chapter 6

Charles heard the cellar door open. The scamper of
little feet came up the stairs. Pink mittens and boots
and pink princess coats went scattered every where. The
hearty pink cheeks held big smiles. "Lookit, lookit!"
small voices chirped. They had built a snow man in the
back yard. Mom reminded them to hang up their coats and
hats and gloves. So they would be dry for the next time.
Dad silently wondered when they would next be able to go
shop for clothes. Dad looked out the window. Sure enough,
there was a snowman. They must have worked hard, at that.
Mom straightened their hair, and sent them to get ready
for a bath. The water heater was natural gas, and they
still had hot water. But for how long, no one knew. Good
thing the laundry was done.

They had called work. They got a busy signal several
times. Finally, someone answered. As they expected,
work was closed, until the electricity came back on.
The table radio was talking, in the kitchen. The
reporter was telling how the riots continued in the
cities. The hungry people were demanding that the
government "do something". They had set up feeding
centers in a couple of the schools and public buildings.
But, there was little they could do without electricity.
They handed out MRE and government cheese, until that
ran out. The government food ran out very quickly.
Charles remarked, that it looks like it's going to get
worse.

"What's worse?" his youngest daughter asked. "Well,
Princess. It's hard to explain, but it means that the
adults in the world are misbehaving. They need to act
better. "Do they need a spanking?" she asked. Charles
smiled, and nodded yes. "You will have to help make up
for it, by being extra good for a while. Things like
remember to hang up to your coat, and keep things neat
and clean. You understand?" She nodded yes. Charles
hugged her. Such a gentle spirit.

Butch stood at the edge of the forest. Trying to hide
behind a tree, so he would not be seen. There was his
big, well maintained and perfectly tuned family hauler
truck. Behind the truck was a cop car, with the lights
on. In front of his truck was a tow truck. The scene
was unmistakable. His truck was being towed.

Butch stood for several seconds. The tow driver got
into the cabin, and with a roar of the engine, took
off. With Butch's truck, on the back. The copcar
turned off the lights, and followed behind the tow
truck.

Butch slowly walked back towards the camp site. His
wife instantly knew something was wrong. Butch said
"truck got towed". His wife burst into tears. She was
starving hungry. Her feet were wet, and she didn't
have any dry socks. The twins had been whimpering,
and the daughter was wearing her "why did you do this
to me" look. His wife went back into the tent, and
zipped the tent closed. Butch decided to look through
the packs, and through his pockets, and find a way to
make a fire. That was the real priority. In the left
pocket of his coat, he found a magnesium bar, with the
flint on the edge. Now, we're on to something. Butch
reached under his coat, and got the Rambo knife which
he had strapped on. He bent down to the chunk of piney
wood fire log, and started to light it, by scraping the
flint. After several minutes of scraping, still no fire.
But, he had managed to cut his thumb, on his left hand.