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29 April, 2011

Guest Post: Preparing a Survival Cache

Most people that have been paying any attention to the news lately would likely agree that things have been precarious to say the least. From natural disasters like tornadoes, earthquakes and tsunamis, to man-made ones such as wars, revolutions and catastrophic industrial accidents,  it’s sometimes hard to dismiss the words of those that believe that this era of civilization is coming to an end. Regardless of how credible you believe these claims are, even the most skeptical would agree that it’s a good idea to be prepared for a life threatening disaster.

One of the most basic parts of preparation has always been to have the proper supplies ready. One increasingly popular strategy has been to bury a survival cache.
A survival cache is basically just a survival kit in a strong sealed container that will allow you to bury it. It should be strong and well-sealed so that its contents will be ready when you need them.

Necessities to include:

For my cache, I’ve chosen to include what I consider to be basic necessities: Non-perishable food, bottled water, warm clothing, first-aid supplies, a tent, a warm sleeping bag, a radio, a good knife, a multi-tool, a quality LED flashlight, headlamp or lantern and extra batteries. I would also include some basic fishing and hunting supplies.

This may seem like a lot, but these items are invaluable should you need them, and there’s no rule that says you can’t bury more than one container.

Trade items:

You may also want to include some items simply for their potential trade value. Tobacco, liquor, chocolate, flashlight bulbs, batteries, soap, deodorant, toothpaste and any other things that, while being generally inexpensive creature-comfort items, would likely become far more valuable should they suddenly become unavailable. Human aid can quickly become the most sought-after resource, and trade items are a good tool to help attain it.

Burying the cache:

You’ll want to be sure that the container you use to bury your cache in is both structurally strong enough to withstand being buried, as well as being impervious to moisture. One common container is a burial tube. These can either be purchased, or you can make your own from something as simple as PVC pipe. If you make your own, remember to provide yourself with a way to get it open later, such as a threaded cap or by burying a tool along with it.

It’s a good idea to store all items that are susceptible to air and moisture in vacuum bags within the cache. It’s also a good idea to include oxygen and moisture absorbers in the cache and airtight bags. This will help protect extra sensitive items such as food, clothing, electronics, batteries, and ammunition.
Bury the cache so that the top is a few feet below ground; deep enough to avoid being disturbed, but not so deep that it will take too long to dig up. Be sure to make a detailed map of where your cache is, and keep this map somewhere safe, where it won’t be forgotten. The hope is that you will never need to retrieve your cache, but it will be there, ready and waiting if you do.

Tom Huntington, Coast Products

Rash of Tornadoes in the South Kill 318

News from The Associated Press: "Survivors of the deadliest tornado outbreak since the Great Depression struggled to begin rebuilding their lives in the wind-wrecked landscape Friday, enduring blackouts and waiting in long lines for gas as their remaining possessions lay hidden in the rubble. President Barack Obama came to devastated Alabama to console victims whose emergency services are so badly strained that at least one town was begging for body bags.

As Obama stepped off a plane at the airport in hard-hit Tuscaloosa, rescuers and survivors combed the remains of neighborhoods pulverized by Wednesday's outbreak that killed at least 318 across seven states. In one of its first official assessments of the tornadoes' strength, the National Weather Service gave the worst possible rating to one that raked Mississippi and said it was the strongest to hit the state since 1966..."


4/27/11 - Video of Tuscaloosa, AL Tornado

YouTube - 4/27/11 - Tuscaloosa Tornado

"This video is from the EF4 tornado that went through Tuscaloosa, AL on 4/27/11. It was taken from the University Mall parking lot. Probably the closest video to the storm your going to see."


Killer Combo of High Gas, Food Prices at Key Tipping Point

Killer Combo of High Gas, Food Prices at Key Tipping Point - CNBC: "The combination of rising gasoline prices and the steepest increase in the cost of food in a generation is threatening to push the US economy into a recession, according to Craig Johnson, president of Customer Growth Partners.

Johnson looks at the percentage of income consumers are spending on gasoline and food as a way of gauging how consumers will fare when energy prices spike.

With gas prices now standing at about $3.90 a gallon, energy costs have now passed 6 percent of spending—a level that Johnson says is a 'tipping point' for consumers..."


Charting the Course to $7 Gas

Charting the Course to $7 Gas :: The Market Oracle :: Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting Free Website: "... Let's go back to the beginning of the current economic crisis — yes, it is still a crisis for many millions of Americans who lost their jobs, ruined their credit, filed for bankruptcy, lost their homes, and lost their lifestyle. Shanty towns have popped up all over America, though rarely gaining media exposure.

Tens of millions have been ripped from the middle class back down into the poverty from whence their parents or grandparents had climbed.

Make no mistake: it is not capitalism that got us here; it is government interventionism and central banking — the Federal Reserve..."


28 April, 2011

From Stockpiling to Living Off the Grid, More Colo. Residents Preparing for Disasters

From stockpiling to living off the grid, more Colo. residents preparing for disasters :: The Republic: "Four families in Yoder are building a sand bunker and stockpiling ammunition and weapons.

A Black Forest resident has erected a geodesic dome on her 5-acre spread to grow vegetables, keeps horses for emergency transportation, in case she can't get gasoline for her car, and plans to acquire chickens and goats as food sources.

A husband and wife who have a cabin on 100 acres of secluded land in Park County have weaned their property from the electric grid, acquired a three-year food supply and taken other measures to become self-sufficient.

While there's little threat of the earthquake and tsumani that rocked Japan last month in landlocked Colorado, other epic crises on the home front are possible: A flood or fire. A terrorist attack. A nuclear weapons launch. World War III. Or an apocalyptic-type scenario.

An increasing number of people say they are getting ready..."


Mainstream Media Puts Good Spin on Bad Real Estate Market

Mainstream Media Puts Good Spin on Bad Real Estate Market | Greg Hunter’s USAWatchdog: "More and more, I am finding stories produced by the mainstream media where the headline doesn’t jibe with the actual story that follows. A USA Today (newspaper) story from the 'Money' section yesterday is a great example of what I am talking about. The headline read 'Rising home sales point to a recovery.' On the very next line, just under the headline, the sub-headline read 'Prices expected to keep falling 5% to 7% this year.' So we have a recovery but prices are falling? What kind of a recovery is that? The story goes on to say, 'Sales of existing homes rose slightly in March but prices fell as the U.S. housing market continues to struggle.' What are the writer and editor at USA Today thinking or even trying to say? This sounds like a story about a struggling real estate market and, in fact, all the evidence says the market is struggling. It is certainly not recovering..."


Americans Depend More On Federal Aid Than Ever

Americans depend more on federal aid than ever - USATODAY.com: "Americans depended more on government assistance in 2010 than at any other time in the nation's history, a USA TODAY analysis of federal data finds. The trend shows few signs of easing, even though the economic recovery is nearly 2 years old.

A record 18.3% of the nation's total personal income was a payment from the government for Social Security, Medicare, food stamps, unemployment benefits and other programs in 2010. Wages accounted for the lowest share of income — 51.0% — since the government began keeping track in 1929.

The income data show how fragile and government-dependent the recovery is..."


Wheat Advances for a Third Day on Deteriorating Crop Conditions in U.S.

Wheat Advances for a Third Day on Deteriorating Crop Conditions in U.S. - Bloomberg: "Wheat rose for a third day in Chicago as worsening winter-crop conditions in the U.S., the largest exporter, and delayed spring-crop plantings fueled supply concerns amid strengthening demand.

About 38 percent of the winter-wheat crop was in poor or very poor condition as of April 17, up from 36 percent a week earlier and 6 percent a year earlier, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said yesterday. Dry weather in the past week from central Kansas to Texas hurt crops. About 5 percent of the spring-wheat crop was sown, against 18 percent a year earlier and the prior five-year average of 12 percent, the USDA said..."


27 April, 2011

Farmer Menaced With Death Threats By Gang Of Gypsies Calls For Help... and Police Turn Up To Confiscate Her Legally-Owned and Locked-Away Shotguns

Farmer's fury after gipsy death threats 999 call results in her legally-held guns being confiscated 'in case she retaliates' | Mail Online: "Having confronted travelers cutting down trees on her farm, terminally-ill Tracy St Clair Pearce found herself subjected to a terrifying ordeal.

Some of the group pelted her with rocks while a youth threatened to slit her throat and slaughter her cattle.

When she dialed 999 she expected the full weight of the law to be on her side.

Instead, however, police officers criticized her for inflaming the situation and confiscated her legally held shotguns – even though they had been locked away in a cabinet at home throughout the incident.

Yesterday, the 50-year-old accused police of causing her ‘harassment and distress’ when she should have been given protection..."


Into The Economic Abyss

Into The Economic Abyss: "Over the past few years, mainstream analysts have shown a tenacious blind faith in the U.S. economy and the dollar that goes far beyond religion to the point of mindless cultism, so, when even they begin to question the future of American finance (as has been occurring more and more everyday), you know its time to worry. For those that have been following my work since 2007, the events of the past few months have not been a surprise at all, however, for those just waking up to the ongoing implosion of our fiscal infrastructure, the bubbling inflationary meltdown just over the horizon and the nightmare unfolding around our national debt is rather shocking. Living through a full spectrum catastrophe is, to say the least, confusing, especially when you have no idea where the whole thing began..."


The Worst-Case Scenario If The U.S. Comes Anywhere Near Defaulting On It's Debt

U.S. debt ceiling: What's the worst-case scenario if the United States comes even close to default? - By Annie Lowrey - Slate Magazine: "On July 6, 2011, a faint buzzing from your bedside table awakes you at 3 a.m. You ignore it. At 3:02, your Blackberry still vibrating, your iPhone, which you use for personal email and calls, starts in with the same high-frequency drone. At 3:03, your home phone starts ringing.

You're a principal at a small, New York-based financial firm. The sudden cacophony means the worst has happened. In mid-May, the United States hit the debt ceiling: Because Congress failed to increase the debt limit, the Treasury Department could no longer issue new bonds to finance the United States' deficit spending and to pay the interest on its existing debt. For a few weeks, Treasury and the White House were able to move money from one pocket to another to keep the country running smoothly. But the congressional bickering never abated, with Republicans insisting on the passage of huge, immediate spending cuts and a balanced budget amendment, and Democrats refusing to consider either—and certainly not to tie them to the debate over the $14.3 trillion ceiling..."


A Dollar's Worth of 'Junk Silver' - Now North of $30

A Dollar's Worth of 'Junk Silver' - Now North of $30 - Seeking Alpha: "Silver crossed an interesting milestone recently. Now one dollar in so-called “junk silver” U.S. coins costs more than $30.

'Junk silver' refers to U.S. dimes, quarters and half dollars minted before 1964. They’re only called 'junk' because they have no numismatic value and are sold solely for silver content.

These pre-1964 coins are 90% silver and weigh 25 grams per dollar in face value. So 10 dimes, for example, weighed 25 grams when minted. Theoretically those 10 dimes contain 22.5 grams of silver – or about 0.723 troy ounces – but because they’ve been circulated, most dealers assume they weigh 0.715 troy ounces.

Or, to look at it another way, if you have $1.40 worth of these coins, that amounts to about one ounce of silver..."


26 April, 2011

How to Make Powdered Eggs

YouTube - How to Make Powdered Eggs


Warning Signs of a Coming Currency Crisis

Currency Crisis 2011: Warning Signs of a Coming Currency Crisis | Greg Hunter’s USAWatchdog: "Gold hit an all-time high this week—again. The yellow metal briefly topped $1,500 an ounce before falling back down a few dollars. The world has become increasingly nervous about the size of the growing U.S. debt. Just this week, America’s debt topped $14.3 trillion (also an all-time high) which is close to the limit Congress can legally borrow.A recent CNSNews.com report shows why the $38 billion, that was just cut, is a drop in the budgetary bucket..."

... Even key members of the Fed are openly worried about America’s sea of red ink. A few weeks ago, Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Richard Fisher said, 'If we continue down on the path on which the fiscal authorities put us, we will become insolvent, the question is when . . . I look at this as a tipping point.' Mr. Fisher said we are just at the beginning of correcting our budget problems and 'it’s going to be very painful.' What do you bet 'painful' will mean forced budget cuts and high inflation...


$6 Gas? Could Happen if Dollar Keeps Getting Weaker

Gasoline Prices: $6 Gas? Could Happen if Dollar Keeps Getting Weaker - CNBC: "A dollar plumbing three-year lows is hitting Americans squarely in the gas tank, and one economist thinks it could drive prices as high as $6 a gallon or more by summertime under the right conditions.

With the greenback coming under increased pressure from Federal Reserve policies and investor appetite for more risk, there seems little direction but up for commodity prices, in particular energy and metals.

Weakness in the US currency feeds upward pressure on commodities, which are priced in dollars and thus come at a discount on the foreign markets..."


25 April, 2011

Supreme Court Bans Medicinal Use of Aloe Plant

So very absurd...

Supreme Court bans medicinal use of aloe plant: "The U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled Monday that people using the aloe vera plant for medicinal purposes are not exempt from federal laws prohibiting use of the naturally occurring herb, which medical experts say can ease the suffering of burn victims.

'It is clear from the text of the [controlled substances law] that Congress has determined the aloe vera plant has no medical benefits worthy of an exception,' Justice Clarence Thomas wrote for the court.

The Supreme Court's decision reversed a 1996 Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that medical necessity can be a legal, 'common law' defense to prosecution. Both raw aloe and the aloe vera plant were included in the 1966 U.S. Controlled Substances Act, classifying aloe as a Class II Narcotic alongside cocaine, marijuana, LSD and other substances that invoke feelings of euphoria in the user...

... Pro-aloe activists insist that since aloe plants occur naturally in the environment, use of the plant and its extract should not be - and in theory, cannot be - controlled. It is believed that as much as 40 percent of the nation's populace illegally uses aloe in their homes.

Legalize AV! volunteer and pro-aloe activist Kendra Kelly said she disagrees with the government's position that it is legal to use manmade antiseptics like hydrogen peroxide and isopropyl alcohol - which often incite hostile reactions in the user - while aloe remains a controlled substance..."


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Why 'Self-Sufficiency' Should Replace 'Sustainability' in the Environmental Movement

Activist Post: Why 'Self-Sufficiency' Should Replace 'Sustainability' in the Environmental Movement: "The environmental movement is in love with the word 'sustainable'. Admittedly, it's a wonderful word in the purest sense, meaning; 1. capable of being sustained, 2. capable of being continued with minimal long-term effect on the environment.

Who doesn't want those capabilities? Yet, 'sustainability', like everything else good and pure, has seemingly been hijacked by the ruling oligarchs as a way to impose more top-down control of society. Passionate environmentalists are beginning to realize that the only way to affect real change is by becoming sustainable individuals through self-sufficiency. This focus on individual empowerment will naturally lead to increased liberty, as it minimizes the tactics used by mega-cartels and government to control our core needs of food, electricity, or medicine. Living in an environmentally and socially sustainable world should be an obvious goal, but it won't work if imposed at the barrel of a gun"


Oil Settles Above $111 Per Barrel

Oil settles above $111 per barrel - Yahoo! Finance: "Oil settled above $111 per barrel Wednesday as the dollar weakened and the government reported an unexpected drop in U.S. crude supplies. Gas pump prices also edged higher to $3.84 for a gallon of regular.

Benchmark West Texas Intermediate oil for June delivery gained $3.17 to settle at $111.45 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Oil has increased 20 percent since the beginning of the year as investors anticipated rising global demand and unrest in North Africa and the Middle East threatened oil fields and shipping lanes vital to world supply..."


Second Amendment Rights Once Again at Risk

Second Amendment Rights Once Again at Risk: "Americans continue to watch their Second Amendment rights diminish, this time as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives ( still known as ATF) launches a campaign to change the definition of “shotgun.” According to the blog Beregond’s Bar, a recently released study by the Bureau will ultimately make shotguns illegal, and may also have negative implications for all guns..."


22 April, 2011

Re: Regarding the Legalization of Drugs And Other Vices With Regard to the Larger Debate Concerning Personal Freedoms

A reader who wished to remain anonymous wrote:

"Personally I'm all for the legalization of pot. There was a measure on our ballot here in California to be able to tax it. Unfortunately that failed.

I see no problem in paying a tax for something like that if it will lower my overall taxation."

My Response:

I agree; there is nothing wrong at all with the idea of the government taxing marijuana, were it to be legalized. I know that some of the things I say on this blog sometimes might leave people with the impression that I am anti-government, but that is actually not the case -- I am only anti-government control. Taxing their citizens is essentially the only way that a government can run, and we should all pay our fair share and be proud to do so.
My only qualm and my main reason for the article above is the idea that the government should hike up the taxes on certain items, services or activities because of their distinction as so-called "vices." This amounts, basically, to a "sin tax" and it is an age old method of legislating morality, when I firmly believe that morality belongs with the person. It is none of the governments business what I do with my time, money, or even my body, as long as I'm not in any way impeding the rights of others.

And, if the idea of paying such a "sin tax" wasn't distasteful enough all on its own, it creates -- as an unavoidable byproduct -- a situation similar to what is happening now with the taxes charged on cigarettes. It begins as the government attempting to legislate morality, but once those taxes are collected into the budget, they take on a life of their own. The government and the agencies the collected funds are allocated to then becomes dependent on them. This creates a Catch-22 where, even if they were successful and fewer people smoke, then that would actually only serve to have them drawing in less money. And, we all know that the remedy for that is that they just simply raise the taxes over and over and over.

It is, in my opinion, a rather shameful and crooked way to run a country.


Apple Slammed Over iPhone, iPad Location Tracking

Apple slammed over iPhone, iPad location tracking - Yahoo! Finance: "Privacy watchdogs are demanding answers from Apple Inc. about why iPhones and iPads are secretly collecting location data on users -- records that cellular service providers routinely keep but require a court order to disgorge.

It's not clear if other smartphones and tablet computers are logging such information on their users. And this week's revelation that the Apple devices do wasn't even new -- some security experts began warning about the issue a year ago.

But the worry prompted by a report from researchers Alasdair Allan and Pete Warden at a technology conference in Santa Clara, Calif., raises questions about how much privacy you implicitly surrender by carrying around a smartphone and the responsibility of the smartphone makers to protect sensitive data that flows through their devices..."


World Bank: Food Prices Have Entered the 'Danger Zone'

World Bank: Food prices have entered the 'danger zone' - Telegraph: "Robert Zoellick, World Bank president, said food prices are at “a tipping point”, having risen 36pc in the last year to levels close to their 2008 peak. The rising cost of food has been much more dramatic in low-income countries, pushing 44m people into poverty since June last year.

Another 10pc rise in food prices would push 10m into extreme poverty, defined as an effective income of less than $1.25 a day. Already, the world’s poor number 1.2bn.

Mr Zoellick said he saw no short term reversal in the damaging effect of food inflation, which is felt much more in the developing world..."


U.S. Companies Shrink Packages as Food Prices Rise

U.S. Companies Shrink Packages as Food Prices Rise - DailyFinance: "U.S. food prices have been rising in the last year, but it seems the growth is only just beginning. A sharp jump in commodities' prices this year will soon result in sticker shock for American consumers.

Large food companies have recently announced that they will raise the prices they charge grocery retailers for commodities-based products. For example, a chocolate bar will cost more soon: Hershey last week announced a 10% increase for most of its confectionery goods.

Of course, straightforward price hikes could cause consumers to buy less of those products or to choose less costly store brands. So in many cases, food companies are trying a different tactic: Keeping the price of an item the same while decreasing the amount of food in the package. The company recoups the costs of the rise in commodities and hopes consumers don't notice that they're getting less of the product for the same price..."


Download Emergency Medicine Manuals for Free

Download Emergency Medicine Manuals for Free


Gas Prices Near $4 a Gallon As Frugal Americans Cut Back At Pump

Gas prices near $4 a gallon as frugal Americans cut back at pump | Mail Online: "Wall Street may be back to awarding $20million pay packages - but rising prices are shaking the confidence of many American consumers.

Average U.S. pump prices have jumped more than 19 cents since mid-March, to $3.765, which is less than 10 per cent below the all-time high.

Average station prices have already passed $4 in Chicago and several Western cities.

With unrest in the Middle East, a weak dollar and high crude prices, experts predict gas prices to rise further in the coming weeks, possibly hitting $5 per gallon by Memorial Day or later.

Some experts are more conservative in their predictions, arguing that it is unlikely for prices to hit $5 in as little as six weeks.

Still, current prices are up 91.3 cents from a year ago (32 per cent), when the national average was $2.852.

The jump in price has caused many families, among them Tamara and Brian Huffman in California, to wonder about the plausibility of storing gas in their backyards.

The Huffmans are also among a growing segment of Americans who have begun stockpiling preserved food as a safeguard against rising prices..."


21 April, 2011

Regarding the Legalization of Drugs And Other Vices With Regard to the Larger Debate Concerning Personal Freedoms

I was recently reading through one of the forum message boards on Topix for my area, and stumbled upon a thread discussing the legalization of marijuana and other drugs. Needless to say, I felt I needed to add my two cents, and thought I would share it here with you as well. My post on the forum is below in quotations and italicized for aesthetic purposes:

"Arguments over whether or not to legalize drugs are, in the end, moot. You are discussing a symptom rather than the disease. The truth of the matter is that things of this sort should never have been made illegal in the first place. Attempts on the part of government to legislate morality are just one more mechanism of control -- of taking away your rights.

Never mind that marijuana was only ever made illegal in the first place because tobacco growers feared that hemp would render their cash crop obsolete (seeing as how it can be used for many other purposes besides those that are recreational) and they had half of Congress in their pockets. Never mind that they (meaning the government with the influence of well-meaning social lobbies) did their absolute best to outlaw liquor and cigarettes as well, until they finally realized that it wasn't going to be possible. Hell, they did outlaw liquor at one point, until they finally realized that all it got them was a burgeoning gangster scene! Ever hear of Al Capone?

And then they came up with the ingenious scheme of just taxing the dog shit out of both of those "vices." Even in those areas where prostitution is legal, as in Nevada, it is extremely expensive, mostly because of the taxes that are being levied. If they can't force you to live the way they want to you to live, then they'll just do everything in their power to make it so expensive that you more or less have no choice. Don't think for one instant that every time they talk about raising taxes on cigarettes it isn't with the long-term goal of making it too expensive for most people to smoke. Also, it wasn't that long ago that a bill was floated in Illinois that would've required every gun owner to purchase a $1 million dollar insurance policy in order to receive a license to own the weapon, the point being that very few people would be able to afford the monthly payment for the policy, thereby taking guns out of people's hands without impeding their 2nd Amendment rights. I haven't heard anything about that in a long time, so I'm hoping that means it was defeated. Never doubt, though, that it was a test case to see how it would be received before trying to roll out something similar on a national level; and, you can be sure that even if it was defeated, it is sitting in an envelope somewhere in someone's desk drawer, waiting to be trotted out again 8 or 10 years from now, in some other state in the hopes of actually getting it on the books. They are trying to tell us how to live!

Now, personally, I would never consider taking any drug that someone had to cook up in a laboratory; I really don't even like to take drugs that are prescribed to me by my doctor, unless I absolutely need them. I don't even take cold medication, unless I am deathly ill; typically, all that stuff does is suppress your symptoms and retard your body's natural processes of healing. Marijuana, on the other hand, is a natural substance that just happens to have certain physical effects on human beings when they inhale the smoke, no different then the effects that come from consuming other natural substances like caffeine and sugar -- yet no one is any big rush to outlaw Starbucks, now are they?"


Farmers' Almanac Gardening Calendar

Farmers' Almanac Gardening Calendar: "The Farmers Almanac Gardening by the Moon Calendar is determined by our age-old formula and applies generally to regions where the climate is favorable..."


Japan Bans Entry Into Fukushima Evacuation Zone

BBC News - Japan bans entry into Fukushima evacuation zone: "Japan has made it illegal to enter a 20km (12-mile) evacuation zone around the stricken Fukushima nuclear reactor.

People were urged to leave the area shortly after the 11 March earthquake and tsunami crippled the plant, but the order was not enforced by law.

Cooling systems were knocked out by the twin disasters and radiation has been leaking from the plant..."


World Bank President: We Are 'One Shock Away From Crisis'

BBC News - World Bank president: 'One shock away from crisis': "The president of the World Bank has warned that the world is 'one shock away from a full-blown crisis'.

Robert Zoellick cited rising food prices as the main threat to poor nations who risk 'losing a generation'...

... 'The crisis in the Middle East and North Africa underscores how we need to put the conclusions from our latest world development report into practice. The report highlighted the importance of citizen security, justice and jobs,' he said.

He also called for the World Bank to act quickly to support reforms in the region.

'Waiting for the situation to stabilise will mean lost opportunities. In revolutionary moments the status quo is not a winning hand.'

At the Washington meetings, turmoil in the Middle East, volatile oil prices and high unemployment were also discussed..."


20 April, 2011

Self-Sufficiency: A Universal Solution to the Globalist Problem

Self-Sufficiency: A Universal Solution to the Globalist Problem - Anti Oligarch: "... At best, all a protest will lead to, while we are so hopelessly dependent on this system, is a round of musical chairs inside the political arena, with perhaps superficial concessions made to the people. The vector sum however, will still be decidedly in favor of the global corporate-financier oligarchy.

If we understand that the fundamental problem facing not only America, but the entire world, is a global corporate-financier oligarchy that has criminally consolidated their wealth by “liberalizing” their own activities while strangling ours through regulations, taxes, and laws, we should then understand why events like Beck’s 'Restoring Honor' are not only fruitless, but in fact, counterproductive. We should also realize that any activity we commit ourselves to must be directed at this corporate-financier oligarchy rather than the governments they have co-opted and positioned as buffers between themselves and the masses.

While people understand something is wrong and recognize the necessity to do 'something,' figuring out what that “something” should be becomes incredibly difficult when so few understand how power really works and how to strip it away from the oligarchs that have criminally consolidated it..."


The Breakdown Draws Near

The Breakdown Draws Near - Blogs at Chris Martenson: "Things are certainly speeding up, and it is my conclusion that we are not more than a year away from the next major financial and economic disruption

In order for the financial system to operate, it needs continual debt expansion and servicing. Both are important. If either is missing, then catastrophe can strike at any time. And by 'catastrophe' I mean big institutions and countries transiting from a state of insolvency into outright bankruptcy.

In a recent article, I noted that the IMF had added up the financing needs of the advanced economies and come to the startling conclusion that the combination of maturing and new debt issuances came to more than a quarter of their combined economies over the next year. A quarter!..."


Google To Invest $100 Million In World's Largest Wind Farm

Google To Invest $100 Million In World's Largest Wind Farm: "Google Inc said on Monday it and two Japanese partners will pay General Electric Co about $500 million for a majority equity stake in the world's largest wind farm, under construction in Oregon.

The $2 billion Shepherds Flat project, near Arlington, Oregon, is due to be completed next year. It will stretch over 30 square miles of north-central Oregon and generate enough energy for 235,000 U.S. homes..."


The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America - Free E-Book

The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America- Free E-Book Download


19 April, 2011

15,000 Acres Burn Over The Weekend in Texas

15,000 acres burn during weekend | KXAN.com: "In what the Texas Forest Service said are the driest conditions it has seen since 1917, crews have added nearly 15,000 acres of new wildfires to their list since Saturday. So far this season, they have responded to more than 7,800 fires across more than 1.5 million acres.

In a letter over the weekend, Gov. Rick Perry pressed President Barack Obama for a federal disaster declaration. Perry has specifically requested direct federal assistance to help fight the fires and emergency protective measures to help protect people and property before, during and after the disaster..."


Future Mega Tsunami

Canary Island Mega Tsunami: "... on one of the Canary Islands lies a major global catastrophe in the making, a natural disaster so big that it could flatten the Atlantic coastlines of Britain, Europe, North Africa and the United States of America and cause enormous damage to London and other UK cities. Scattered across the world,s oceans are a handful of rare geological time-bombs which, once unleashed, create an extraordinary phenomenon, a gigantic tidal wave, called a Mega Tsunami. These are able to cross oceans and ravage countries on the other side of the world...

... the next Mega Tsunami is likely to begin on one of the Canary Islands, off the coast of North Africa, where a wall of water will one day race across the entire Atlantic Ocean at the speed of a jet airliner to devastate the east coast of the United States, the Caribbean and Brazil.

Dr Simon Day, who works at the Benfield Greig Hazards Research Centre, University College London, says that one flank of the Cumbre Vieja volcano on the island of La Palma, in the Canaries, is unstable and could plunge into the ocean during the volcano's next eruption.

Dr. Day says: 'If the volcano collapsed in one block of almost 20 cubic kilometres of rock, weighing 500 billion tonnes - twice the size of the Isle of Wight - it would fall into water almost 4 miles deep and create an undersea wave 2000 feet tall. Within five minutes of the landslide, a dome of water about a mile high would form and then collapse, before the Mega Tsunami fanned out in every direction, traveling at speeds of up to 500 mph. A 330ft wave would strike the western Sahara in less than an hour.'

Europe would be protected from the fiercest force by the position of the other Canary Islands, but...

... After six hours it would reach Britain, where waves up to 40 ft high would hit southwest England at 500 miles per hour, travel a mile inland and obliterate almost everything in its path. Even Britain's more sheltered shores, in the North Sea and Irish Sea, will be struck by smaller but still significant swells, causing widespread flooding in major coastal cities...

... However, the destruction in the United Kingdom will be as nothing compared to the devastation reeked on the eastern seaboard of the United States. Dr. Day claims that the Mega Tsunami will generate a wave that will be inconceivably catastrophic. He says: 'It will surge across the Atlantic at 500 miles per hour in less than seven hours, engulfing the whole U.S. east coast with a wave almost two hundred feet high... sweeping away everything in its path up to 20 miles inland. Boston would be hit first, followed by New York, then all the way down the coast to Miami, the Caribbean and Brazil.' Millions would be killed, and as Dr. Day explains: 'It's not a question of 'if' Cumbre Vieja collapses, it's simply a question of 'when'...."


Dam Failure Would Utterly Destroy Bakersfield, CA

Daily Kos: When The Dam Failure Destroys Bakersfield: "... like all the other aging infrastructure in the United States there are more than 4,000 dams that are considered susceptible to failure.

While we hear about the occasional bridge collapse with its attended loss of life, that is nothing compared to what would happen if one or more of the 12 dams that are rated as most server (a combination of likelihood of failure and magnitude of consequence if they did) failed.

In the New York Times article about this today they give the example of the Lake Isabella Dam which is above Bakersfield CA. If this dam failed it would flood the city with a lake 30 feet deep. That would happen in a very short period of time, measured in minutes not hours or days. 180 billion (as in thousand million) gallons of water would slam down the canyon and hammer the city of 340,000. In a little less than seven hours 2/3 of the city would be underwater. While there would be a good chance to get many of the residents out it is unlikely that every one would be able to evacuate.

It would be a disaster on the scale of the levies failing in New Orleans, but where parts of that city were saved by being on higher ground, nothing in Bakersfield would be exempt for the inundation.

There are 85,000 dams in the United States, and only 4,400 are considered in danger of failure, but that is still enough to put millions of people in danger and risk hundreds of billions of dollars of property damage..."


18 April, 2011

Dozens Killed By Weekend Storms

Dozens of people killed by storm system | Detroit Free Press | freep.com: "A tornado-spawning storm system that killed at least 45 people across half the country unleashed its worst fury on North Carolina, where homes broke apart, trees snapped and livestock were swept into the air. Residents in the capital city and rural hamlets alike on Sunday mourned the dead, marveled at their own survival and began to clean up devastated neighborhoods.

Observers reported more than 60 tornadoes across North Carolina on Saturday, but most of the state's 21 confirmed deaths occurred in two rural counties. A thunderstorm spawned a tornado that killed four people in southeastern Bladen County, then kept dropping tornadoes as it hopscotched more than 150 miles, eventually moving into Bertie County and killing 11 more.

Heavy winds swept some homes from their foundations, demolished others and flipped cars on tiny rural roads..."


20 Signs That A Horrific Global Food Crisis Is Coming

20 Signs That A Horrific Global Food Crisis Is Coming: "In case you haven't noticed, the world is on the verge of a horrific global food crisis. At some point, this crisis will affect you and your family. It may not be today, and it may not be tomorrow, but it is going to happen. Crazy weather and horrifying natural disasters have played havoc with agricultural production in many areas of the globe over the past couple of years. Meanwhile, the price of oil has begun to skyrocket. The entire global economy is predicated on the ability to use massive amounts of inexpensive oil to cheaply produce food and other goods and transport them over vast distances. Without cheap oil the whole game changes. Topsoil is being depleted at a staggering rate and key aquifers all over the world are being drained at an alarming pace. Global food prices are already at an all-time high and they continue to move up aggressively. So what is going to happen to our world when hundreds of millions more people cannot afford to feed themselves?

Most Americans are so accustomed to supermarkets that are absolutely packed to the gills with massive amounts of really inexpensive food that they cannot even imagine that life could be any other way. Unfortunately, that era is ending..."


How to Build an Early Medieval Clock

How to Build an Early Medieval Clock: "Mechanical clocks with verge and foliot escapements began showing up in Europe in the early 1300's and, although the currently extant specimens are made of metal, there is evidence to suggest that wood was not an uncommon material for making the works out of.

Kits for verge and foliot clocks are available, but they are either made in unattractive plastic (yech!) or are pressed paper or cardboard, which simply doesn't last very long. Unsatisfied with what I found on the market, I researched the subject of medieval clock building for a few years, doing both literature searches and examining actual period clocks, and then set about building my own medieval styled clocks with wooden works.

Then, to top it off, I 'wrote the book'. (I have put a short excerpt from the book on-line at http://www.thescholarsgarret.com/clock/excerpt.html)..."


"The Colony" on DVD


15 April, 2011

Guest Post: When Technology Fails - 5 Reasons to Un-Automate Your Children

These days, it's normal to see kids plugged into devices. It's an everyday occurrence to see six year olds playing their portable game consoles with earphones on, and four year olds glued to a screen more often than they play with physical toys. While there are certain advantages of children being technologically adept, it saddens me to see the loss of interaction, and the struggle to get them unplugged when they need to interact with others. So much has now been automated, simulated and made artificial, and as parents we want our children to live in the real world.

Everyone has become technology dependent nowadays, using gadgets and screens to think for us, get our social life in check, and even keep us in shape, and this "addiction" is taking its toll. In an article at Komonews.com, a sleep specialist has pointed out that the more children are exposed to technology, the less they sleep, and that loss of sleep creates developmental and psychological problems. She also says that children would be more adept at coping if they received a bit more time to rest. Keep your kids unplugged and teach them to survive in the real world with a few of these brain building and skill learning activities:

  • Reading real books. While an e-reader is convenient, the feel of reading and the experience can be different from real books. As this article on Wired.com points out, the audience can be less engaged with an e-reader, because there are implied options to easily go to another page or link in the device, and this can distract the reader.
  • Using a real map instead of a GPS. Who doesn't have a GPS in their car or on their mobile phone these days? While this device is very convenient to everyone, it can be very difficult for people to find their way when their devices aren't there to do the thinking for them. Teaching kids to read physical maps will prepare them for the reality of finding their way when they do get lost, and that survival skill is very important for anyone.
  • Cooking a real meal instead of sticking one in the microwave. Cooking is a basic skill from which everyone can benefit. While having a meal delivered or nuked in the microwave can be very easy, the nutritional (and financial) benefits are slim to none. Encouraging your kids to know their way around the kitchen can help them develop better eating habits, and understand the value of a nutritional meal.
  • Written notes instead of email and social networking posts. While some consider it tedious to actually write and send snail mail, the written note is greatly appreciated by all who receive it. Thank you notes that were written on actual paper and given directly show real gratitude, and reaching out to people with mailed cards on occasions adds a personal touch to any sentiment. Teach your kids to give more effort in saying thank you, happy birthday or we miss you with a written note.
  • Playing real sports and exercising the real way. We say "real way", because the Wii has simulated almost any sport and found a way to exercise indoors. Let your child experience the outdoors and play sports with his peers. It not only helps his physical well-being, but also stretches his social and mental skills as well. Team sports require cooperation and strategy as a unit to win games, and this experience will let your child grow into a well-rounded individual, learning to engage with his age group and competing in a healthy, safe way.

Now, how are you going to get your child unplugged? While it may be harder to pry them away from their gadgets than it is to climb Mount Everest, we have come up with a few suggestions to get them unwired:

  • Set a wire-free day of the week. Whether it is Monday or Friday or Sunday, set the rule for a day without gadgets. Tell your kids they are welcome to take up any activities that don't require a plug to do it, and take the lead by following the rule yourself, so no one gets envious.
  • No gadgets at the table. Dinnertime is wireless at our house. We encourage interaction and conversation over the table, with the people present. You'll get to know your children better, and help them develop conversational skills as well.

Getting your kids away from the screen and into the real world is really going to help them develop fully as people, without the aid of gadgets and other technology. Teach them the value of fully living their lives, and watch them bloom as individuals.

Renee Bedford is a mom and wife who believes in teaching her children to be self-reliant and prepared. She knows that not only will these skills keep them safer, but they will also make them smarter! Besides being a committed mother, she also works for the Christmas Tree Market, where they sell an array of classic and unique artificial Christmas trees.

7 Secrets for a High-Yield Vegetable Garden

7 Secrets for a High-Yield Vegetable Garden: Organic Gardening: "Imagine harvesting nearly half a ton of tasty, beautiful, organically grown vegetables from a 15 x 20-foot plot, 100 pounds of tomatoes from just 100 square feet (a 4 x 25-foot bed), or 20 pounds of carrots from just 24 square feet.

Yields like these are easier to achieve than you may think. The secret to super-productive gardening is taking the time now to plan strategies that will work for your garden. Here are seven high-yield strategies gleaned from gardeners who have learned to make the most of their garden space..."


5 Things That Will Happen To You When America Goes Bankrupt

5 Things That Will Happen To You When America Goes Bankrupt - John Hawkins - Townhall Conservative: "Does it seem too strong to call the way America deals with its debt 'madness?' If not madness, then what? Denial? An addiction? However you phrase it, we're a country that's in deep trouble, but so many of us seem unable to deal with it.

Liberals in this country, for the most part, will admit that we're running up 'unsustainable' deficits. Yet, these same liberals adamantly oppose any and all serious efforts to do anything about it. Once you move out from liberals to the general public, once again you'll find plenty of people who admit that this nation has a huge problem. Yet, when you leave generalities, get down to specifics, and start looking for programs to cut, then suddenly everyone gets nervous and says, 'never mind.' It's like the old saying, 'Everyone wants to go to heaven, but no one wants to die.'

Sadly, this is a natural outgrowth of ladling out public funds to special interests. There is so much collective money that few people feel or appreciate it when even billions are saved. Yet, if we yank even a few million away from special interest groups like PBS, Planned Parenthood, or the unions, they squeal like pigs that are about to accidentally be put in the wolves’ pen at the zoo..."


14 April, 2011

Tornado Watches In Central Plains

Tornado watches issued in central Plains - CNN.com: "Tornado watches were issued Thursday afternoon for portions of Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas and surrounding areas as severe thunderstorms intensified and forecasters predicted tornadoes, damaging wind and hail.

The National Weather Service issued the watches, which indicate conditions are favorable for tornadoes and severe thunderstorms in and close to the watch area.

Western Arkansas, southeast Kansas, extreme southwest Missouri, eastern Oklahoma and extreme northeast Texas are considered the most vulnerable regions.

This system will set the stage for severe weather over the next few days, according to CNN meteorologist Sean Morris. Large, damaging hail up to the size of softballs also will be possible with these storms..."


Preparing & Cooking Garden Snails

California Preppers Network: Preparing & Cooking Garden Snails: "If the SHTF and food sources become over hunted...and they will. You must consider other means of feeding your family. The garden snail, Helix aspersa, came to Britain with the Romans, who loved to eat them, they may have come earlier, in the Bronze age, but didn’t spread much. It’s the snail most cultivated for gourmet food and is known as petit gris..."


Future Farm: A Sunless, Rainless Room Indoors

Future farm: a sunless, rainless room indoors - Yahoo! News: "Farming is moving indoors, where the sun never shines, where rainfall is irrelevant and where the climate is always right.

The perfect crop field could be inside a windowless building with meticulously controlled light, temperature, humidity, air quality and nutrition. It could be in a New York high-rise, a Siberian bunker, or a sprawling complex in the Saudi desert.

Advocates say this, or something like it, may be an answer to the world's food problems..."


13 April, 2011

Is Tribalism The Future?

Is tribalism the future?: "... In this young century, America has gone to war in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Pakistan. Belatedly, in all four, we discovered that, before we plunged in, we knew nothing of the complexity of these countries.

Within Afghanistan, dominated by Pashtun in the south and east, are Hazara in the central mountains and Uzbeks and Tajiks in the north.

In Iraq, there are Arabs, Kurds, Sunni, Shia, Turkmen and Christians.

Libya, cobbled together out of the Ottoman provinces of Tripolitania and Cyrenaica, is home to 30 major tribes, the largest of which are the Warfalla and Margharha.

A few years back, professor Jerry Z. Muller wrote in Foreign Affairs that World Wars I and II were at root ethno-national wars of Europeans fighting to create nations where their own tribe ruled and their own culture was predominant.

Only when this was achieved in 1945, after immense bloodshed, did peace come to Europe...

... This week, we read of "intercommunal" violence in the Ivory Coast – i.e., a massacre of 1,000 people.

Is this not tribal war of the kind we saw between Yoruba and Ibo in Nigeria, Kikuyu and Luo in Kenya, Mashona and Matabele in Zimbabwe, and Tutsi and Hutu in Rwanda and Burundi?

In Peru and Bolivia, ethnic politicians are demanding a redivision of the national wealth with the "indigenous peoples" receiving shares more commensurate with their superior numbers.

Tribalism suddenly seems ascendant over globalism.

Transnational institutions created to bring the world together – the IMF, World Bank, U.N., EU, NATO, WTO, G-8, Kyoto Protocol – are all under stress.

The artificial countries are coming apart. Sudan is sundering as Ethiopia did. Is Yemen next? Joe Biden argued for dividing up Iraq, which may happen when the Americans go.

China, with its crackdown on Tibetans and Uighurs, fears the pull and power of ethno-nationalism. Saudi Arabia – by sending troops to aid the Sunni monarchy of Bahrain put down an uprising by its Shia majority – testifies to its us-versus-them view of the Arab world.

People are naturally attracted to the strong horse, not the weak horse, said Osama bin Laden. While democracy has great appeal to Third World peoples, it is often because democracy offers a sure path to power for the ethno-national majority to which they belong..."


U.S. Dollar Crisis Looms, Spike in Interest Rates Following End of QE2

U.S. Dollar Crisis Looms, Spike in Interest Rates Following End of QE2 :: The Market Oracle :: Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting Free Website: "Chris Martenson writes: As a major currency crisis looms in the west, there are some things that we should all expect. Lifestyle changes that we don't have to imagine, but ones we can see happening right in front of us today. Now the catalyst for the beginning of a major currency crisis could be several things. To note just a few, QE2 ending would cause a spike in interest rates, banking crisis, and inevitably a debt crisis that would lead to a dollar crisis.

Unfortunately for those living in America, the extension of more QE, a QE3 will only delay the inevitable and actually make things much worse in the end. QE3 will signal to the world that there is no hope for the U.S. to ever manage its debt crisis, an admission that our economy is propped up by fiat magic money, and global price inflation will occur as a result of an increase in the global reserve currency.

An oil spike, which could be the most likely as we write this today, could literally be the final nail in the coffin sparking massive price inflation, shortages, and a renewed debt crisis as consumers default on credit cards and mortgages in order to buy fuel and other household needs..."


Treasury May Borrow Federal Retirement Funds in Debt Emergency

Treasury may borrow federal retirement funds in debt emergency - FederalTimes.com: "The government could temporarily tap tens of billions of dollars from two federal employee retirement programs if Congress fails to raise the federal debt ceiling next month, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner told lawmakers.

The government expects to hit a $14.3 trillion debt ceiling on May 16 or before, Geithner said in a Monday letter.

Geither implored Congress to extend the debt ceiling by that deadline and said that if Congress does not, Treasury will be forced to borrow money from the Civil Service Retirement and Disability Fund, and the Thrift Savings Plan's Government Securities Investment Fund..."


Stranded Japanese Farmer, 75, Found Alone in City Rocked by Tsunami, Earthquake

Stranded Japanese farmer, 75, found alone in Minami Soma, city rocked by tsunami, earthquake: "Kunio Shiga must have felt like the last man on earth.

The feeble 75-year-old was discovered stranded alone in his small farmhouse on Friday, surrounded by fallen trees, dead pigs and garbage strewn by the deadly March 11 tsunami in Japan.

He doesn't know where his wife is, and his neighbors have all fled his city of Minami Soma because it's within the 12-mile zone of a radiation-leaking plant. Authorities had ordered evacuations but Shiga, who has trouble walking, and was unable to leave.

'You are the first people I have spoken to' since the earthquake and tsunami, Shiga told the Associated Press.

With the man's permission, local police were notified of his dire situation.

Shiga recounted his harrowing experience, how he had nearly run out of food, had no electricity or running water, and how no rescuers ever came for him.

The farmer said he had spent his days sitting in his dark home listening to a battery-powered radio..."


12 April, 2011

Japanese Nuclear Agency Considering Higher Threat Level

Japan nuclear agency considering higher threat level - CNN.com: "Japan's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency said Tuesday it was considering whether to raise the nuclear threat level from 5 to 7, the highest level, which would put the country's nuclear disaster on par with the 1986 Chernobyl accident.

The agency said it planned to give an update on its decision in a news conference at 11 a.m. Tuesday (10 p.m. Monday ET).

According to the International Nuclear Events Scale, a level 5 equates to the likelihood of a release of radioactive material, several deaths from radiation and severe damage to a reactor core.

The 1979 incident at Pennsylvania's Three Mile Island was a 5. The partial meltdown of a reactor core there was deemed the worst nuclear accident in U.S. history..."