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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Product review: Coleman Rechargeable LED Lantern

Coleman LED Rechargeable LanternI've purchased several different rechargeable and dynamo powered LED lanterns. From cheap junk to overly-expensive specialty items. This Coleman hits a sweet spot for price and performance.

Pros:
- Nice and Bright
- 12v rechargable cable (which makes recharging from my Brunton 26W solar panel nice!)
- Light at max intensity actualy lasts a bit longer than the spec says it will. Surprising as this is the FIRST LED lantern that I've owned that actually came anywhere near the spec on the box. VERY PLEASED!

Cons:
- A diffuser might have been a good option (Don't look into the light!)

Guest Post: Adopting the GREY MAN Philosophy By Northern Raider

© 2011 Northern Raider / UKSG 1999
Part one The Problem

In many occasions over recent years many governments (AUS/UK/US especially) have attempted to combat terrorism by implementing laws that too often erode the personal freedoms and civil rights of the general public.

The laws in theory are to help the government  gather information and intelligence on people THEY consider COULD be threats to the state or law and order.

They have done such things as limit or even ban the ownership of fire arms to law abiding members of the public, Introduce laws that circumvent the concept of INNOCENT UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY. In the UK they wanted to hold “SUSPECTS” up to 3 months without trial or charge, they tried to get permission to wiretap or monitor peoples private communications WITHOUT GOOD REASON.

In some notable cases people have been prosecuted on multiple occasions for holding certain beliefs that the state disagrees with such as saying “Many parts of the UK’s Asian community are systematically grooming and abusing young white girls”

The political activist who said those words was acting on information fed back to him from multiple parts of the UK, A TV station also discovered this to be happening. But for expressing those words he was hounded by the EQUALITIES COMMISION and taken to court for restating those beliefs, the TV station was banned from airing its findings.  He was cleared on all counts on at every trial. He spoke words the government did not like as it tried to portray Britain and a harmonious balanced multi cultural society, they hounded him and tried to portray him as a “CRIMINAL” .  Yet in the last week it transpires ALL of what he said was true and a senior former government minister and two very senior police officers have admitted publicly the abuse and grooming IS happening.

In the US many American people believe the hastily introduced “ Patriot Act” is being used and abused  be government officers to erode rights and liberties, and the fact that the nation held in esteem globally as being the good guys when it comes to justice are actually torturing suspects and holding them illegally in foreign prisons is unjust.

Many other such examples exist but the point I an trying to make is What if the government or one of its agencies suddenly decides your Group, Church, COLLECTIVE, City, State, business or community are “Possible criminal or terrorist organisations?”  ( Remember Randy Weaver?)

Environmental activists, Fuel price protestors, Anti war activists, Certain Church groups, Militia groups, Home Education Groups, etc have ALL been treated as possible terror groups in the very recent past.
Currently it is just far too easy for law abiding citizens to be suddenly designated as Anti social / Anti British or American / Criminal activists or possible terrorists. Indeed since 2001 the USA has encouraged its citizens to keep and maintain emergency / disaster kits to sustain the people for 72 hours up to 6 weeks. The UK finally followed suit after decades of calling any citizen who built retreats or stored food as hoarders and black marketers, BUT if suddenly there was food or fuel shortages hitting the UK or US  just how long before the government decided privately held fuel and food supplies was hoarding AGAIN and make ILLEGAL ?

Perhaps you are part of the community either side of the Atlantic that feels both the US and Europe have reached maximum sustainable population levels and object to any more migrants on numerical grounds or the affect foreign cultures are having upon your own indigenous culture?. Trouble is both sides of the Atlantic are very many power liberal thinking politicians who feel anyone and everyone should be welcomed into your countries and fed, clothed and housed at your tax payers expense. Equally there are many right wing big businessmen who want plenty of cheap migrant none union workers to come to help keep wages down.

Your desire to keep the status quo and to protect your homeland, culture, environment and faith group makes YOU their enemy, and given the chance they will twist the law to have you classed as a criminal or enemy of the state.

Its just too easy for survivalists and preppers to be classed as “Criminals” by those in power who disagree with our free spirited and independent lifestyle.

Adopting the GREY MAN Philosophy
Part two a Partial Answer

I am not going to even attempt to suggest I have a one size fits all answer because I don’t have one, but I can offer some advice on how to remain as low on official radar as possible.

Wise preppers don’t plan on bugging out by foot from inner city areas dressed as Rambo in full cammos and carrying a Mini 14, or plan on wandering round the boonies in hunters orange jackets. Rather they choose  to dress as boring, drab, unattractive and uninteresting as possible to the authorities and predatory gangs as they leave town, and to blend into the countryside as much as possible when out in the boonies. They become Grey men doing their utmost to go unnoticed as possible.

Equally the enlightened survivalists Bug Out Vehicle does not look like something out of a Mad Max movie or like some Paris Dakar Rally competitor. Their vehicles are modified and customised to give the extra capacity and capability they carry extra fuel and water, better ground clearance ,food storage, etc but when possible it is fitted WITHIN the vehicle so as to make it look as normal and bland as the rest of the wheels in commuterville. There vehicles become grey men’s wheels, unappealing low key as possible.

There is nothing governments like more than facts, figures, statistics and information on its people for tax gathering, pension planning, city utility planning, etc.  But as this world gets ever more crowded, violent and hostile the governments also like to gather ever more information that can be used to control and manipulated people, this can be very bad for preppers and survivalists wishing to live on the edge of organised and micro managed society.

Some authorities like to record what LIBRARY books people of interest read, they like nothing more than seeing which books and manuals you have bought from ONLINE BOOKSELLERS.  Bulk purchased a load of reloading gear? You should have paid cash for it because the itemised sales receipt is in the system, Buy little and often and pay cash.

The same common sense approach should be applied to buying food and fuel for your stockpile and cache, Buy little and often and pay cash when possible and buy from different stores. For heavens sake never use customer loyalty points cards as you simply provide TPTB a ready made list of all you have purchased for the last few years.

Generally if you buy online or with a credit card you are telling anyone who wants to know what you bought , when you bought it and how much of it you bought, That’s never a good thing for preppers.

For my fellow Brits do you REALLY need to keep a firearm?, As soon as you submit the application for an FAC you become a person on interest to the authorities, they will check your medical history to see if you have any loonatic   tendancies. They will flag your address on the database to be visited if TSHTF to seize your guns, and whilst they are there you can be sure they will rummage about look and possible find your supplies, You need to weigh up your need for a firearm for hunting after TSHTF and the risk you face in the authorities clearing you out when you need it most. I chose not to bother with a gun, the risks were just to great for me.

Some areas even keep a list of 4x4 vehicles being kept so they can be requisitioned by the authorities in an emergency. You need to remain legally list as your vehicles owner, but you need to think about moving the vehicle to some other location if there is a likelihood in say a massive flood or blizzard because the cops may come for your 4x4. Again don’t let the vehicle look like its an all singing all dancing  expedition vehicle as you can be sure jealous eyes are watching , Keep the Winch, sand mats, roof tent, sand mats and hi lift jacks hidden when possible until you absolutely need to deploy them.

As mentioned briefly in above, try and choose the type and colour of your BO Kits clothing and baggage as drab and unappealing as possible, don’t look like Rambo in the city and don’t broadcast your position with bright colours in the countryside. Don’t wave expensive kit around, Conceal your radios, I-PODs, Micro laptops, and other goodies from anyone not part of your group.

To summarise, you need to become the most uninteresting, unthreatening and unappealing person possible, not only to the predatory scum but also the authorities.  And NEVER become a refugee in the care of the government because they WILL redistribute YOUR stuff among more “needy” people, Usually themselves who have the role of caring for you.
NR

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