note: remember when I was telling you how pitiful our military today is compared to WWII? The navy had something like seven thousand ships, but today about 400 ( exact figures eluding memory )? Well, here's another one. In three years, there were 6 million M1 Carbines produced, a support personnel weapon, not even the primary infantry rifle. In fifty years, the total M-16's made is only 8 million.
note: Old Dog, one of the best donations this year-love you, bro!
The last twenty years has been interesting. Eventful. As you know, I have a rather boring life and like it that way. My three main occupations were worrying about the immanent apocalypse, worrying how crappy my job would be tomorrow and concerning myself how difficult my current wife would prove to be. Well, as the collapse moves closer and closer I worry less and less ( more on that below ), and since our demise is near I have been very comfortable trying to wean myself away from ( mostly, relatively ) the need for money and can pursue my love rather than a paycheck. And of course, sorry lady minions, I’ve found the world’s best wife. It only took most of my life, but I guess that is good since it allowed me to taste all the bad so I’d recognize the far better. So really, while everyone else tiptoed closer to a mid-life crisis I’ve been busy tripping over a pile of feces and arose smelling of roses. Yes, yes he does. Baby Jesus loves me most. But I shan’t gloat overly much on the wonderfulness that is my life, instead focusing on the prepping journey. I’m not claiming you have twenty years also, but I think the path is interesting.
I will forever be indebted to Gary North for his yeoman service doing the heavy lifting documenting the coming calamity of Y2K ( he compiled and linked others work, not as easy then as it is now ). It doesn’t matter that nothing happened. What mattered was that through the new wonder that was the Internet, I received a much needed lesson on systematic collapse. Prior to that I only ever read the conventional survivalists books and magazines. As you might image, their primary lesson was: buy our approved products and thrive, not just survive! Yes, there was Kurt Saxon in the Seventies and up to the late Eighties ( primarily-he pretty much petered out after that ) who threw in a bit of frugality to the process, but even he was an optimist claiming our post collapse lifestyle would be an idyllic 19th century return to a life worth contemplating. Basically, to all, post-apoc was one way or another an improvement and not at all icky. Those painting the picture of Y2K were no were near as convinced it would be any better than Watts, Somalia and Mad Max combined. To me this was a bit of fresh air, a change of perspective. Even the dommiest of doom prior had seemed like a brief transition period. Now, probably due to the primary focus in and on itself, the horror of the event was more readily conveyed. And, more importantly, for the first time there wasn’t a Happily Ever After.
If it hadn’t been for Y2K, I might never have evolved past the Militia Porn, Libertarian, one year prep fest I had previously imagined as the norm. Yuppie Scum Survivalism in outlook of consequences, if not supplies. Once I had that more holistic approach it became apparent where the gaps in my preps were. As I had been envisioning more of a long camping trip and now I was more aware of, well, simply, the OTHER people in the world ( when you begin to prep it is easy to focus inward rather than outward ), I simply had to go from bugging out to bugging in. Less supplies from nature, more stockpiled supplies ( as flawed as bugging in is, I was at least more focused on the outside factors which were problematic-and, I had nowhere to bug out to other than wilderness, although with long term supplies ). If I had been in another area my focus might have been altered. As it was, I’m deathly afraid of Lucifer’s Recon Troops, snakes and spiders, or at least the tropical version which are far deadlier, and no way was I living with them.
The good thing about the bug-in was my learning curve starting at zero supplies, and the branch-off additional items I was only now aware of needing. I went from camping with wheat to stocking a spaceship, as it were. Yes, flawed strategies all, but it was a process of learning the hidden infrastructure and expanding the needed logistics. Of learning of the true system behind the retail. I was like a supermarket shopper who knew meat came from Styrofoam trays, then learning about soil microbes which nourished the grass which fed soon to be slaughtered cows. Four years ago right after the child support payments were finished, I began a two year spending spree for all the miscellaneous doo-dads and minor tools I needed to expand from bolts and filters, wheat and ammo. There are a LOT of incidental supplies needed to fill in a spaceship, and I started learning about that at Y2K. Yet, fundamentally, I never really evolved past the basics supply-wise. I never thought to go past wheat to freeze dried or from bolt guns to semi’s, for all the reasons I harp on. Going from stocking for a short emergency to stocking for civilization collapse wasn’t so much more in quality as much as quantity.
Expanding the underlying support system for the basics was as far as I ever branched out on prepping. At heart it was still war surplus and wheat kernels, but a heck of a lot more of it. What I added to the mix was prepping for the lead up to the collapse rather than just the collapse itself. I needed to do more than emergency supplies. I needed to prep for the economic collapse. Giving up the mobile home in an overpopulated state and devolving to travel trailer living in a rural one, declaring bankruptcy, buying precious metals while cheap, buying junk land for hundreds rather than thousands, beefing up my savings while I lived on even less while seeing to emergency prep supply expansion, learning alternate energy and expanding the every day cupboard, and a whole lot more. I was expanding my horizon from calamity to life before the calamity. Yes, at one time I was also that blinders wearing douche who thought you worked to the day of the apocalypse and then it was an overnight collapse. Think of me as an old grandpa telling you to avoid all the dumb ass mistakes he made.
And now? Well, so what if things get worse? Don’t get me wrong, nobody is going to avoid damage as there is blood in the street, but as far as the Greatest Depression leading up to that? And as far as the transition away from that to stabilizing in a new de-growth system? No problem. I’m calm and confident. It long ago stopped being about stuff and more about accepting and seeing. Getting your head around reality beyond that of a happy consumer. Once you see how helpless you actually are, how so many forces conspire against you, how little we matter, you stop being deluded that middle class shopping is going to do all that good and start changing your life to survive just fine on a whole lot less. It becomes more about calories than taste, more about defense than Industrial Age offense ( this is not to refute the best defense being a great offense. Ambushing your enemy with primitive weapons is far better than defense with all the cool high tech toys. What I’m referring to is understanding the danger of strategy and tactics suitable only for the old era ).
It becomes more important mentally than logistically, after a certain point. With training and practice you can live comfortably in a Stone Age existence ( not to downplay the danger of calorie deficit ), but with all the money in the world your pre-stocked supplies eventually still run out. When I tell you, you will much sooner rather than later need to turn feral and either steal from neighboring tribes or kill off the same to keep them from stealing from you, that is a mental issue, not an equipment matter. When you look at preps needing to be perpetual rather than short term, that is more a mental adjustment than a call for another shopping list. That was my twenty year journey, more a mental enlightenment than the need to shop ( again, after a certain point ). It doesn’t take any extra money to be MORE prepared. As you expand your sight to conceptualize a world tomorrow not like today, a world of far less stuff, even at the cost of luxury and sloth, you start divorcing yourself from the “necessities” and that saves you money, which just goes to the transition process preparedness necessities.
Once you realize cars won’t be fueled again, very shortly, you go to bikes or walking, a lifetime supply of those a drop in the bucket compared to a motor vehicle. The savings allow you to buy junk land and build your own home without debt, which allows you to accept a lower paying job which gives you freedom of choice. All the while you beef up your basic supplies, invest in a simpler life and each step of the way you need less to save more. Each step brings you more freedom, cheaper. It is a positive feedback loop. But it is ALL mental. If you don’t preprogram your notions, needs and necessities you’ll never even start. It was certainly NOT an easy journey. I just made it look that way reporting, mostly, after the fact. But like all good things, the journey was the important part and worth the trouble. Peace.
END ( today's related link http://amzn.to/2uOBDdT )
* By the by, all my writing is copyrighted. For the obtuse out there
"...start changing your life to survive just fine on a whole lot less."ReplyDelete
There ya go. That's the money shot right there.
Here's the short explanation: You were born and bred to earn and spend all of your life and almost everything around you supports that dynamic. It's the Matrix.
I am 100% convinced that your location, where you live, is the fuel that drives that Matrix, because people are inherently weak minded. Lazy, as it were. People are attracted to anything that makes their life convenient like a moth to a laser beam. bzzzzt...bang!
Take away the convenience and instantly less is more. Just like that.
If you live close to others life becomes easy. Live alone and life becomes a challenge. That describes the diff between urban and rural. Hungry in urbania? Grub is seconds away. It's seconds away in ruralville too, if you planned ahead. See it? Urbanites must rely on others, Ruralists must rely on themselves.
Do more, use less, and get the hell outta dodge, now!
While you can.
But first, take control of your mind.
I thought I was helping by saying use your mind to substitute your money, but I wonder if that is actually harder.Delete
Agreed GhostSniper. That sort of line is why I contribute to Jim and his blog (both by way of money/ commissions, and comments) even if I am wrong in my comments I can hopefully get Jim's wheels spinning to come out with some more gems like that line.Delete
You are also correct about the difference between rural and urban. There is more of a community feel in rural areas - as your neighbor may be your only chance of rescue in the case of a disaster of most sorts, but the neighbors also know better than to try to use regulations and rules to constrain you, as that will only get you mad at their rules.
James I sent you an email to the 303@reagan addyReplyDelete
Read and replied, thanks a millionDelete
Deed is done. Hopefully it bumps your traffic up.Delete
Double top secret loyal minion brownie points, regardless.Delete
Fyi--I put off buying wheat until I moved and the price has doubled!! A u g a s o n Farms 26 pound buckets were $17+ at Walmart online and Amazon. Now $36.99 & $39.99.... (Hard red winter.)ReplyDelete
HAHAHAHAHA!!!!! I TOLD you bastards to buy when the crop failure was reported!!!!VINDICATION!!!!! NW- I can see why you'd put off the purchase moving. Why pay to move bulk weight? You probably wouldn't have saved money anyway.Delete
The rest of you: I don't recall commercial retail buckets going up during other weather events. You really would do well to NOT postpone purchase much longer. In a year, if the price goes down, you won't regret spending more, you'll just bask in the glow of your food insurance.
Yes, you did.Delete
Thank you Lord Bison. You are absolutely right about the attitude change. I was like you in thinking of survival as more of a temporary camping trip.ReplyDelete
Now I see it is a permanent change down to third world conditions. You are the best.
Damn, I am the best, ain't I? :)LOLDelete