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What Is The Best Place To Live In America? Pros And Cons For All 50 States

If you could live in any state in America, where would you go?  During troubled times like these, what is the best place in the United States to live?  A lot of people are asking these kinds of questions these days.  Our economy is on the verge of collapse, natural disasters are becoming more frequent and more intense, the U.S. population is becoming angrier and more frustrated by the day, our government has become incredibly oppressive and controlling, war could break out at any time and evidence that society is breaking down is all around us.  As our world becomes increasingly unstable, many families are considering moving somewhere else.  But what areas are best and what areas should be avoided?  Is there really a “best place to live” in America?  Well, the truth is that each family is facing a different set of circumstances.  If you have a great support system where you live, it can be really tough to pick up and move 3000 miles away from that support system.  If you have a great job where you live now, it can be really tough to move some place where there may be no job at all for you.  But without a doubt there are some areas of the country that will be far better off than others in the event of a major economic collapse.  This article will take a look at each of the 50 U.S. states and will list some of the pros and cons for moving to each one.

Not all of the factors listed below will be important to you, and a few have even been thrown in for humor.  But if you are thinking of moving in the near future hopefully this list will give you some food for thought.

A few years ago when my wife and I were living near Washington D.C. we knew that we wanted a change and we went through this kind of a process.  We literally evaluated areas from coast to coast.  In the end, we found a place that is absolutely perfect for us.  But different things are important to different people.

And if I gave your particular state a low rating, please don’t think that I am trashing the entire state or all of the people who live there.

For example, there are some absolutely wonderful people that live in the state of California, and there are some areas of California that I would not mind visiting at all.  But for the times that are coming I am convinced that it is going to be a really bad place to live.

Not that I have all the answers either.  Hopefully this article can get some debates started, and hopefully those debates will help people that are thinking of moving to another state to be more informed.

The following are some pros and cons for all 50 states….

Alabama

Pros: warm weather, southern hospitality, relatively low population density

Cons: hurricanes, tornadoes, crime, not enough jobs, multiple nuclear power plants, rampant poverty

Overall Rating: C+

Alaska

Pros: great fishing, lots of empty space, low population density, great for rugged individualists

Cons: very high cost of living, earthquakes, volcanoes, extremely cold, short growing season, too much snow, potentially cut off from supplies from the lower 48 states during an emergency situation

Overall Rating: B

Arizona

Pros: warm weather

Cons: illegal immigration, wildfires, return of dust bowl conditions, not enough jobs, not enough rain, multiple nuclear power plants, crime, gang violence, Phoenix

Overall Rating: D+

Arkansas

Pros: southern hospitality, warm weather, Ozark National Forest

Cons: tornadoes, Clintons, New Madrid fault zone, multiple nuclear power plants, crime, rampant poverty

Overall Rating: C

California

Pros: Disneyland, warm weather, Malibu

Cons: high taxes, Jerry Brown, earthquakes, mudslides, wildfires, gang violence, crime, traffic, rampant poverty, insane politicians, ridiculous regulations, bad schools, political correctness, illegal immigration, not enough jobs, air pollution, multiple nuclear power plants, possible tsunami threat along the coast, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland, Stockton, Sacramento, huge drug problem, high population density, the state government is broke, many more reasons to leave California right here

Overall Rating: F

Colorado

Pros: Rocky Mountains, Colorado Springs

Cons: wildfires, illegal immigration, short growing season, not enough rain, too much snow, huge drug problem

Overall Rating: B

Connecticut

Pros: beautiful homes

Cons: high taxes, insane politicians, ridiculous regulations, political correctness, short growing season, multiple nuclear power plants, high population density

Overall Rating: C-

Delaware

Pros: good fishing

Cons: Joe Biden, political correctness, ridiculous regulations, insane politicians, crime, high population density

Overall Rating: D

Florida

Pros: University of Florida Gators, oranges, low taxes, southern hospitality, Disneyworld, Gainesville, warm weather, beautiful beaches, Daytona

Cons: hurricanes, most of the state is barely above sea level, high population density, not enough jobs, multiple nuclear power plants, crime, gang violence, illegal immigration

Overall Rating: C

Georgia

Pros: peaches, southern hospitality, warm weather

Cons: not enough jobs, multiple nuclear power plants, crime, gang violence, flesh eating disease, Atlanta

Overall Rating: B-

Hawaii

Pros: awesome beaches, warm weather, great vacation destination

Cons: vulnerable to tsunamis, very high cost of living, volcanoes, traffic, high population density, high taxes

Overall Rating: C-

Idaho

Pros: awesome people live there, great potatoes, low population density, high concentration of liberty-minded individuals, low crime, Sandpoint, Coeur d’Alene, north Idaho has plenty of water compared to the rest of the interior West, beautiful scenery

Cons: cold in the winter, wildfires, short growing season, not enough jobs

Overall Rating: A

Illinois

Pros: once you get away from Chicago things are not quite so bad

Cons: Barack Obama, drought, New Madrid fault zone, high population density, political correctness, ridiculous regulations, insane politicians, crime, gang violence, Chicago, East St. Louis, not enough jobs, multiple nuclear power plants, mob robberies, the state government is drowning in debt

Overall Rating: D-

Indiana

Pros: it is in better shape than Illinois, good farming, high Amish population

Cons: drought, tornadoes, the city of Gary, relatively high population density, near the New Madrid fault zone, a “rust belt” state

Overall Rating: C-

Iowa

Pros: low population density, low crime, good farming

Cons: drought, tornadoes, cold in the winter, multiple nuclear power plants, too much snow, very flat

Overall Rating: B-

Kansas

Pros: low population density, low crime, good farming

Cons: drought, tornadoes, return of dust bowl conditions, very flat

Overall Rating: B

Kentucky

Pros: southern hospitality, great horses, Lexington

Cons: New Madrid fault zone, not enough jobs, rampant poverty, Louisville

Overall Rating: C

Louisiana

Pros: southern hospitality, warm weather

Cons: hurricanes, New Orleans, not enough jobs, tornadoes, multiple nuclear power plants, oil spills, crime, gang violence, rampant poverty

Overall Rating: D

Maine

Pros: low population density, low crime, polite people

Cons: extremely cold, short growing season, political correctness, ridiculous regulations, insane politicians, too much snow

Overall Rating: B-

Maryland

Pros: the Washington Redskins play there

Cons: Baltimore, borders Washington D.C., high population density, really bad traffic, political correctness, ridiculous regulations, insane politicians, multiple nuclear power plants, crime, gang violence

Overall Rating: C-

Massachusetts

Pros: beautiful homes

Cons: high taxes, political correctness, ridiculous regulations, insane politicians, high population density, short growing season, almost everything is illegal in Massachusetts

Overall Rating: D+

Michigan

Pros: once you get away from Detroit and Flint things get better

Cons: Detroit, Flint, Dearborn, extremely cold, short growing season, political correctness, ridiculous regulations, insane politicians, not enough jobs, multiple nuclear power plants, too much snow, a “rust belt” state

Overall Rating: D-

Minnesota

Pros: land of 10,000 lakes

Cons: extremely cold, short growing season, multiple nuclear power plants, too much snow, high taxes

Overall Rating: C

Mississippi

Pros: southern hospitality, relatively low population density, warm weather

Cons: hurricanes, tornadoes, not enough jobs, rampant poverty, crime

Overall Rating: C+

Missouri

Pros: good farming, Branson

Cons: drought, tornadoes, New Madrid fault zone, not enough jobs, crime

Overall Rating: C

Montana

Pros: low population density, low taxes, high concentration of liberty-minded individuals, Missoula, Kalispell

Cons: extremely cold in the winter, wildfires, short growing season, not enough rain, near Yellowstone super volcano, rampant poverty, too much snow

Overall Rating: B+

Nebraska

Pros: low population density, good farming

Cons: tornadoes, drought, multiple nuclear power plants, cold in the winter, very flat

Overall Rating: B

Nevada

Pros: low population density, lots of empty space, low taxes, warm weather

Cons: Harry Reid, Las Vegas, Reno, not enough water, not enough rain, wildfires, hard to grow food, not enough jobs, crime, gang violence, huge drug problem, Yucca Mountain

Overall Rating: D+

New Hampshire

Pros: low crime, beautiful homes

Cons: extremely cold, short growing season, political correctness, ridiculous regulations, insane politicians, too much snow

Overall Rating: C

New Jersey

Pros: anyone got something?

Cons: high population density, Camden, Newark, not enough jobs, multiple nuclear power plants, Atlantic City, crime, gang violence

Overall Rating: D-

New Mexico

Pros: low population density, warm weather

Cons: illegal immigration, wildfires, return of dust bowl conditions, not enough jobs, not enough rain, crime, gang violence, huge drug problem

Overall Rating: C-

New York

Pros: the entire state is not like New York City

Cons: New York City, Mayor Bloomberg, high taxes, cold in the winter, high population density, political correctness, ridiculous regulations, insane politicians, not enough jobs, multiple nuclear power plants, the “too big to fail” banks

Overall Rating: D

North Carolina

Pros: southern hospitality, warm weather, Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Cons: hurricanes, not enough jobs, multiple nuclear power plants

Overall Rating: B

North Dakota

Pros: low crime, lots of oil-related jobs, low population density

Cons: extremely cold, short growing season, too much snow

Overall Rating: B

Ohio

Pros: the Cincinnati Reds, the Pro Football Hall of Fame, high Amish population

Cons: not enough jobs, cold in the winter, multiple nuclear power plants, high population density, Toledo, Cleveland, a “rust belt” state

Overall Rating: C

Oklahoma

Pros: warm weather, good farming

Cons: drought, tornadoes, wildfires, return of dust bowl conditions, not enough rain, crime, Oklahoma City, rampant poverty

Overall Rating: C

Oregon

Pros: tremendous natural beauty

Cons: high taxes, Portland, political correctness, ridiculous regulations, insane politicians, not enough jobs, huge drug problem, possible tsunami threat along the coast

Overall Rating: C-

Pennsylvania

Pros: high Amish population

Cons: high population density, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, not enough jobs, multiple nuclear power plants, a “rust belt” state

Overall Rating: C

Rhode Island

Pros: so small that most people don’t notice their problems

Cons: the state is flat broke, short growing season, political correctness, ridiculous regulations, insane politicians, not enough jobs, high population density

Overall Rating: D+

South Carolina

Pros: southern hospitality, warm weather, Myrtle Beach

Cons: hurricanes, not enough jobs, multiple nuclear power plants, crime, gang violence, rampant poverty

Overall Rating: B

South Dakota

Pros: low population density, fun tourist traps, the Badlands, Mount Rushmore

Cons: extremely cold, short growing season, very flat, too much snow

Overall Rating: B

Tennessee

Pros: Nashville, Michael W. Smith, southern hospitality, warm weather, Gatlinburg

Cons: Memphis, New Madrid fault zone, multiple nuclear power plants, crime, gang violence, rampant poverty

Overall Rating: B-

Texas

Pros: low taxes, warm weather, Austin

Cons: drought, illegal immigration, tornadoes, wildfires, West Nile Virus, the Dallas Cowboys, return of dust bowl conditions, speed traps, not enough rain, multiple nuclear power plants, George W. Bush, crime

Overall Rating: B-

Utah

Pros: beautiful mountains, low crime, low population density

Cons: cold in the winter, wildfires, Salt Lake City, short growing season, not enough rain, illegal to collect rain

Overall Rating: B-

Vermont

Pros: low crime, beautiful homes

Cons: cold in the winter, insane politicians, ridiculous regulations, short growing season, political correctness, not enough jobs, too much snow

Overall Rating: C

Virginia

Pros: the University of Virginia, southern hospitality, Charlottesville

Cons: borders Washington D.C., high population density, multiple nuclear power plants, Richmond, really bad traffic in northern Virginia

Overall Rating: B-

Washington

Pros: the eastern half of the state is quite nice and much different from the coast

Cons: way too much rain along the coast, volcanoes, wildfires, insane politicians, ridiculous regulations, political correctness, not enough jobs, possible tsunami threat along the coast, Seattle

Overall Rating: C

West Virginia

Pros: beautiful mountains

Cons: not enough jobs, rampant poverty

Overall Rating: B

Wisconsin

Pros: cheese, the Green Bay Packers

Cons: extremely cold, short growing season, multiple nuclear power plants, too much snow,

Overall Rating: B-

Wyoming

Pros: low population density, lots of empty space, low taxes

Cons: extremely cold, too windy, too flat, wildfires, short growing season, not enough rain, Yellowstone super volcano

Overall Rating: B-

What do you think of these rankings?

What do you think is the best place to live in America?

Do you have any additional pros and cons that should be added to this list?

Please feel free to post a comment with your thoughts below….

The Number One Catastrophic Event That Americans Worry About: Economic Collapse

Can you guess what the number one catastrophic event that Americans worry about is?  There are certainly many to choose from.  Many Americans are deathly afraid of a major terrorist attack.  Others live in constant fear of natural disasters such as earthquakes, volcanoes and hurricanes.  Still others are incredibly concerned that a massive pandemic will break out at any time or that World War III will erupt in the Middle East.  Yes, there are certainly a lot of potential catastrophic events that one can worry about in the times in which we live, but the number one catastrophic event that Americans worry about is actually “economic collapse”.  At least that is what a recent survey conducted by Leiflin Inc. for the EcoHealth Alliance found.  But this goes along with what so many other polls have found over the past few years.  Over and over again, opinion polls have found that the number one issue that American voters are concerned about is the economy.  The truth is that average Americans are deeply, deeply concerned about unemployment, debt, the housing crash and the steady decline in the standard of living.  It has been years since the U.S. economy has operated at a “normal” level, and many Americans are afraid that things could soon get a whole lot worse.

In the new survey mentioned above, those contacted were asked to select the top three potential catastrophes that worry them the most.

The following results come directly from the survey….

Economic Collapse: 63%
Natural Disaster: 46%
Terrorist Attack: 44%
Global Disease Outbreak: 33%
Global War: 27%
Nuclear Accident: 25%
Global Warming: 22%
Fuel Shortage: 15%
Cyber War: 8%
Famine: 8%
Oil Spill: 6%
Industrial Accident: 5%

As you can see, “economic collapse” was the winner by a wide margin.

So are there good reasons for the American people to be concerned about an economic collapse?

Of course there are.

Back in 2008, a financial crisis that began on Wall Street was felt in the farthest corners of the globe.

This time, ground zero for the financial crisis is going to be in Europe.  As I have written about previously, the European financial system is rapidly coming apart at the seams.  The euro continues to drop like a rock, and banking stocks continue their long-term decline.

Many people expect a “financial collapse” to happen on a particular day.  But that is not how it happens usually.  Instead, it is often like a snowball that starts rolling downhill very slowly at first but that eventually become a huge avalanche.

Right now, we are seeing the financial world come apart in slow motion.  A recent article posted on Automatic Earth included a list of the year-to-date performance of some of the most prominent global banking stocks.  These numbers are absolutely staggering….

  • BofA: -60.38%
  • Citi: -44.76%
  • Goldman Sachs: -46.41%
  • JPMorgan: -23.03%
  • Morgan Stanley: -45.24%
  • RBS: -50%
  • Barclays: -34.32%
  • Lloyds: -63.02%
  • UBS: -29.33%
  • Deutsche Bank: -28,55%
  • Crédit Agricole: -56.04%
  • BNP Paribas: -37.67%
  • Société Générale: -59.57%

But because these numbers happened over the course of a year and not on a single day it doesn’t feel quite as much like a “collapse”.

Unfortunately, things are about to get a whole lot worse.  Global credit markets are really freezing up – especially in Europe.

Considering the fact that the entire global financial system is based on credit and debt, that is a very bad thing.

Our system simply does not work when banks do not want to lend money to each other or to businesses.

Just yesterday there was an article in the Guardian that talked about how it looks like the credit crunch may be getting even worse….

“If European banks are still this concerned, it’s not a good sign,” said Karl Schamotta, senior markets strategist with Western Union Business Solutions. “That underlines the possibility that this liquidity crunch is getting worse and will continue into the new year.”

When banks cut back on lending, that causes the money supply to shrink.  When the money supply shrinks substantially, it is almost impossible to avoid a recession.  A recent article by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard detailed how the money supply in many eurozone nations is shrinking at a very rapid pace right now….

Simon Ward from Henderson Global Investors said “narrow” M1 money – which includes cash and overnight deposits, and signals short-term spending plans – shows an alarming split between North and South.

While real M1 deposits are still holding up in the German bloc, the rate of fall over the last six months (annualised) has been 20.7pc in Greece, 16.3pc in Portugal, 11.8pc in Ireland, and 8.1pc in Spain, and 6.7pc in Italy. The pace of decline in Italy has been accelerating, partly due to capital flight. “This rate of contraction is greater than in early 2008 and implies an even deeper recession, both for Italy and the whole periphery,” said Mr Ward.

Those are very, very frightening numbers.

About the only thing propping up European banks right now is the fact that the European Central Bank is loaning them gigantic piles of cheap money.

But there is a big problem.

European banks are running out of collateral for those loans as an article in the Wall Street Journal recently noted….

Even after the European Central Bank doled out nearly half a trillion euros of loans to cash-strapped banks last week, fears about potential financial problems are still stalking the sector. One big reason: concerns about collateral.

The only way European banks can now convince anyone—institutional investors, fellow banks or the ECB—to lend them money is if they pledge high-quality assets as collateral.

Now some regulators and bankers are becoming nervous that some lenders’ supplies of such assets, which include European government bonds and investment-grade non-government debt, are running low.

So what happens when banks all over Europe start running out of collateral and can’t get any more loans?

The answer should be obvious.

As I detailed a few days ago, many prominent voices in the financial world now believe that we could be looking at a financial crisis that will be even worse than 2008.

If you want to see what happens when a collapse happens and a depression begins, just look at what is happening in Greece….

*100,000 businesses have been closed since the beginning of the crisis.

*About a third of the nation is now living in poverty.

*The unemployment rate for those under the age of 24 is 39 percent.

*The number of suicides has increased by 40 percent in the past year.

*Thefts and burglaries nearly doubled between 2007 and 2009.

Things have gotten so bad that hundreds of families in Greece are abandoning their children.

Some are taking their children to charitable institutions and others are handing them directly over to the government.

The following sad story of one Greek family comes from an article in the Guardian….

“Psychologically we were all in a bit of a mess,” said Gasparinatos. “We were sleeping on mattresses on the floor, the rent hadn’t been paid for months, something had to be done.”

And so, with Christmas approaching, the 42-year-old took the decision to put in an official request for three of his boys and one daughter to be taken into care.

“The crisis had killed us. I am ashamed to say but it had got to the point where I couldn’t even afford the €2 needed to buy bread,” he told the Guardian. “We didn’t want to break up the family but we did think it would be easier for them if four of my children were sent to an institution for maybe two or three years.”

Does that seem shocking to you?

Well, all of this is coming to America eventually.

Someday we will see American parents abandoning their children because they cannot take care of them anymore.

Someday we will see suicides absolutely skyrocket in America because people have lost all hope.

Someday we will see thefts and burglaries soar to unprecedented heights as millions of desperate people attempt to try to find some way to survive.

It is all coming.

The federal government cannot pile up a trillion dollars of additional debt every year indefinitely.

We cannot afford to see an average of 23 manufacturing facilities a day in the United States shut down.  Eventually there won’t be anymore factories to shut down.

We cannot afford to keep putting millions more Americans on welfare.  At this point the government is feeding 46 million Americans a month.  Will the government eventually be feeding most of us?

The U.S. economy is getting weaker and weaker and weaker.  All of the long-term trends are absolutely nightmarish.  We are accumulating debt faster than ever, and our ability to produce wealth is diminishing faster than ever.

There is no way that things are going to be okay if we stay on the path that we are currently on.

So the truth is that Americans should be very concerned about an economic collapse.

It is coming and it is going to be very painful.

Drought Of 2011: The Southern United States Is Desperate For Rain As The Middle Part Of The Country Continues To Get Scorched

2011 sure has been a wild year for America so far.  First we had unprecedented tornado outbreaks, then we had horrific flooding along the Mississippi and Missouri rivers, then we had record setting wildfires and now we are facing a crippling drought all over the southern United States.  From Arizona all the way to Georgia there are vast areas that have been declared to be experiencing “exceptional drought” by the National Weather Service.  Crop failures are widespread and ranchers are having a very difficult time trying to feed their cattle.  If the southern United States does not receive a significant amount of rain soon, the drought of 2011 is going to be one of biggest natural disasters that we have seen in a long, long time.

Right now, approximately 29 percent of the country is experiencing some level of drought.  About 12 percent of the U.S. is experiencing “exceptional drought”, which is the highest level of drought.  The combination of very little rain and scorching heat over much of the nation has been absolutely devastating.  Many areas have been dealing with high temperatures in the 90s and the low triple digits for weeks.

Between October and June, the state of Texas experienced one of the driest stretches ever recorded.  Already, the drought of 2011 is considered to be the third-worst drought ever experienced in Texas.

Currently, approximately 72 percent of the state of Texas is dealing with “exceptional drought” conditions.  It has been estimated that 30 percent of the wheat fields in Texas will be lost.  Agricultural losses from the drought of 2011 are projected to be $3 billion in the state of Texas alone.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has already designated all 254 counties in the state of Texas as natural disaster areas.  The farmers and ranchers down there are going through hell right now.

But Texas is not alone.  Most of Arizona, all of New Mexico, all of Oklahoma, most of Arkansas, all of Louisiana, most of Mississippi, most of Alabama, most of Georgia, most of Florida, most of South Carolina and most of North Carolina are also dealing with drought conditions.

This drought is hitting many of our most significant agricultural areas.  If we don’t get a significant amount of rain in some of these areas soon the losses are going to be catastrophic.

At this point, Oklahoma has just had 28 percent of the rainfall that it normally gets during the summer.  Many other areas are experiencing similar problems.

Just check out the map below.  The areas that are the darkest are the areas that are experiencing “exceptional drought”….

Needless to say, the drought of 2011 is absolutely devastating a lot of hard working farmers and ranchers.

A recent article posted on CNBC described some of the effects that this drought is having on farmers….

“The heat and the drought are so bad in this southwest corner of Georgia that hogs can barely eat. Corn, a lucrative crop with a notorious thirst, is burning up in fields. Cotton plants are too weak to punch through soil so dry it might as well be pavement.”

So what is going to happen if this drought continues for the rest of the summer?

Ranchers are also having a very hard time right now.  All over Texas, as pastures die off ranchers are selling their herds because soon they will not be able to feed them any longer.

Right now cattle are being slaughtered in record numbers due to the drought.  But after all of these cattle are gone will we be facing a cattle shortage?

Thanks to the recent wildfires and the tremendous drought, it is getting very difficult for ranchers to feed their cattle.  Just check out the following statistics from a recent article in the Christian Science Monitor….

Most Texas pasture and range lands – 86 percent – are currently “poor” or “very poor,” according to the US Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service. The same rating applied to 69 percent of Oklahoma and 40 percent of Kansas.

During this month, high temperatures of over 110 degrees have been very common in cattle country.  There is not enough for these cattle to eat and there is not enough for these cattle to drink.  If things do not turn around soon, even more ranchers will be racing to sell off their herds while they still can.

But it is not just cattle that are being devastated by this drought.  Just check out what this drought is doing to deer….

Pregnant does are having problems carrying fawns to term, and most of them born prematurely aren’t surviving, according to the Texas AgriLife Extension Service. Other does are abandoning their newborns because drought-induced malnutrition has robbed them of their ability to produce milk.

Abandoned fawns found all over the Panhandle and South Plains have been brought to the South Plains Wildlife Rehabilitation Center. Ten had been brought to the Lubbock wildlife center by the end of last week.

This drought has also had some other dramatic effects.

For example, a gigantic “wall of dust” recently rolled through Phoenix, Arizona.  Take a moment and watch the video posted below.  Does this remind anyone else of the “Dust Bowl” of the 1930s?….

In economic terms, the drought of 2011 could end up having a huge impact on average American families.

Ultimately, American consumers are likely going to feel some significant pain from this crisis as a recent CNBC article noted….

That means grocery shoppers will feel the effects of the drought at the dinner table, where the cost of staples like meat and bread will most likely rise, said Michael J. Roberts, an associate professor of agricultural and resource economics at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, N.C. “The biggest losers are consumers,” he said.

All of this wouldn’t be so alarming if we were not already on the verge of a global food crisis.  Global food prices continue to hover around record highs.  Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya are experiencing the worst drought conditions that they have seen in 60 years.  Tonight there are 10 million people living in the Horn of Africa that are facing severe food shortages.  Hunger and starvation are spreading again in east Africa and in many other areas of the world as well.

That is one reason why so many Americans are working so hard to prepare for disaster right now.  All over the United States (and around the world), “preppers” are storing up food and supplies in case things go really bad.

Some Americans are taking things to extreme levels.  For example, a man named Steven Huff is constructing a 72,000 square foot “home” (some call it a fortress) in Missouri.  Huff is the chairman of Wisconsin-based TF Concrete Forming Systems.  Apparently the goal is to show off what his firm is capable of.  It is claimed that this will be “a home that uses very low energy, as well as having strong resistance to tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, fire, flood and insect damage”.

It kind of looks like a castle to me.  You can see a picture of this remarkable “home” right here.

Unfortunately, most of us cannot afford to build 72,000 square foot fortresses.  So we will just have to do the best that we can with what we already have.

The world is becoming more unstable every single day.  Global financial markets are getting extremely nervous and jumpy.  More chaos or more war could erupt in the Middle East at any time.  Natural disasters continue to get more frequent and more intense.  We certainly do live in interesting times.

It is imperative that we all watch carefully as these global events unfold.  None of us knows for sure what is going to happen next.  But those that are prepared are going to have the best chance to make it through when disaster does strike.

The Tornadoes Of 2011: The Worst Natural Disaster In The United States Since Hurricane Katrina

The worst natural disaster in the United States since Hurricane Katrina just happened, and many in the mainstream media are already treating it like back page news.  It can be really tempting to want to talk about whatever the next “news cycle” brings us, but right now we really need to pray for those affected by “the tornadoes of 2011″.  There are parts of Alabama, Mississippi and Georgia that will never, ever be the same again.  Entire towns have been wiped off the map.  Hundreds are dead and thousands have been seriously injured.  Over a million people lost power.  One of the tornadoes that ripped through the region was reported to be a mile wide.  How in the world are you supposed to get away from something like that once it is on top of you?  Many in the mainstream media have already acknowledged that this was the worst natural disaster in the U.S. since Hurricane Katrina took 1,800 lives back in 2005.  Over and over and over, those living in the region are describing the devastation by saying that they have “never seen anything like it”.  This truly was one for the history books.

The F5 tornado that ripped through the Tuscaloosa, Alabama area was reportedly so monstrous that it is still kind of difficult to believe that it was actually real.  The thing was a mile wide and scientists are estimating that it had winds that exceeded 260 miles an hour.

According to National Geographic, this monster tornado may have traveled a whopping 300 miles across Alabama and Georgia.

Can you even imagine the kind of devastation that we are talking about?

It is hard to even conceive of how much damage a mile-wide F5 tornado with winds of up to 260 MPH would do as it traveled across 300 miles.

Dozens are dead and close to a thousand people are injured in the city of Tuscaloosa alone.

At this point, the city looks like a war zone.  In fact, Tuscaloosa mayor Walter Maddox says that his city has been “obliterated”.

A stunned Maddox was quoted by The Telegraph as saying the following about the devastation….

“I don’t know how anyone survived,” said Mr Maddox. “It’s an amazing scene.

A state of emergency has been declared in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma and Tennessee.

But this disaster will not be “cleaned up” in a few days or a few weeks.

This was literally a history changing event for millions of people.

The last time the death toll from a tornado outbreak was this high was back in March 1932.

If you have the time, try to watch some videos of the devastation caused by these tornadoes.  It is incredibly difficult to try to do the damage caused by these tornadoes justice using only words.

The following is how an article posted on USA Today describes the devastation in the town of Smithville, Mississippi….

Powerful tornadoes swept through this northeastern Mississippi hamlet and across much of the South on Wednesday, splintering homes, shearing roofs and destroying lives. Smithville’s Town Hall was destroyed, as were the local high school, four churches and each of the town’s 14 businesses. Mattresses hung from tree branches, cars were flattened as if stepped on by giant feet, and rows of three-story pine trees snapped in half.

Do you think that Smithville will ever be the same?

Yes, the tornadoes of 2011 will be remembered for a very, very long time.

The people living in these areas deserve our prayers.

Thousands of lives have been permanently altered forever.  The following is just one example that CNN reported on….

Janet Puckett stands outside what’s left of her home on 30th Avenue in Alberta. Its walls crumbled under the force of the storm. Her living room and a front bedroom disappeared. The roof of the house got sucked up, too.

“A war zone,” she says of the mountains of broken 2-by-4s and other debris all around.

How would you feel if your roof and half your house were suddenly missing?

Would you rebuild?

Would you feel safe living in the same area?

Would your life ever be the same again?

Sadly, massive tornado outbreaks seem to be happening with increasing frequency in the South.

Back on April 16th, a similar wave of very violent thunderstorms spawned approximately 140 tornadoes.  During that event, 22 people were killed in the state of North Carolina.

Overall, there have been approximately 600 tornadoes in the United States during April.  That is the most tornadoes that have ever been recorded in a single month.

Usually, the U.S. only experiences about 1,200 tornadoes for the entire year.  So what we are seeing right now is highly unusual.

The tornadoes that just ripped through the South also had a massive impact on the economy down there.

It has been estimated that up to 25 percent of all of the poultry houses in Alabama were either significantly damaged or destroyed.  It is also believed that millions of birds were killed.

Alabama produces more chicken than anywhere else in the United States except for Georgia and Arkansas.

So get ready to pay more for chicken.

Meanwhile, many key agricultural areas of Texas are experiencing their worst drought in decades.  According to CNBC, climate experts are becoming extremely concerned about the lack of rainfall….

Data issued Thursday by a consortium of national climate experts said 95 percent of Texas was suffering “severe drought,” or worse, up from 92 percent a week earlier. More than 70 percent of the state was in the worse conditions of “extreme drought” or “exceptional drought.” That is up from 68 percent a week ago in extreme and exceptional drought.

Not only that, some areas along the Mississippi River are having to deal with “historic flooding” right now.  The following is from a recent article on Accuweather.com….

As if tornadoes and damaging thunderstorms were not enough, historic flooding is also threatening the Mississippi River, below St. Louis, as well as the lower part of the Ohio River.

The rising waters are expected to top levels set during February 1937. This mark is the middle Mississippi Valley’s equivalent to the 1993 event farther north along Old Man River.

Things are really crazy out there right now.

Please pray for those that lost family and friends during these recent tornadoes.  There are thousands upon thousands of good people down in the South that are really hurting right now.  They could really use our prayers.

As I have written about previously, our world is seemingly going crazy right now and nothing is stable anymore.  The earth is shaking, natural disasters are becoming worse, the economy is falling apart and America appears to be coming apart at the seams.

Unfortunately, I believe that things are going to become even more unstable in the months and years ahead.

So what do all of you believe?  Feel free to leave a comment with your opinion below….

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.

There are all kinds of indications that we are now entering a time when there will not be nearly enough food for everyone in the world.  As competition for food supplies increases, food prices are going to go up.  In fact, at some point they are going to go way up.

Let’s look at some of the key reasons why an increasing number of people believe that a massive food crisis is on the horizon.

The following are 20 signs that a horrific global food crisis is coming….

#1 According to the World Bank, 44 million people around the globe have been pushed into extreme poverty since last June because of rising food prices.

#2 The world is losing topsoil at an astounding rate.  In fact, according to Lester Brown, “one third of the world’s cropland is losing topsoil faster than new soil is forming through natural processes”.

#3 Due to U.S. ethanol subsidies, almost a third of all corn grown in the United States is now used for fuel.  This is putting a lot of stress on the price of corn.

#4 Due to a lack of water, some countries in the Middle East find themselves forced to almost totally rely on other nations for basic food staples.  For example, it is being projected that there will be no more wheat production in Saudi Arabia by the year 2012.

#5 Water tables all over the globe are being depleted at an alarming rate due to “overpumping”.  According to the World Bank, there are 130 million people in China and 175 million people in India that are being fed with grain with water that is being pumped out of aquifers faster than it can be replaced.  So what happens once all of that water is gone?

#6 In the United States, the systematic depletion of the Ogallala Aquifer could eventually turn “America’s Breadbasket” back into the “Dust Bowl”.

#7 Diseases such as UG99 wheat rust are wiping out increasingly large segments of the world food supply.

#8 The tsunami and subsequent nuclear crisis in Japan have rendered vast agricultural areas in that nation unusable.  In fact, there are many that believe that eventually a significant portion of northern Japan will be considered to be uninhabitable.  Not only that, many are now convinced that the Japanese economy, the third largest economy in the world, is likely to totally collapse as a result of all this.

#9 The price of oil may be the biggest factor on this list.  The way that we produce our food is very heavily dependent on oil.  The way that we transport our food is very heavily dependent on oil.  When you have skyrocketing oil prices, our entire food production system becomes much more expensive.  If the price of oil continues to stay high, we are going to see much higher food prices and some forms of food production will no longer make economic sense at all.

#10 At some point the world could experience a very serious fertilizer shortage.  According to scientists with the Global Phosphorus Research Initiative, the world is not going to have enough phosphorous to meet agricultural demand in just 30 to 40 years.

#11 Food inflation is already devastating many economies around the globe.  For example, India is dealing with an annual food inflation rate of 18 percent.

#12 According to the United Nations, the global price of food reached a new all-time high in February.

#13 According to the World Bank, the global price of food has risen 36% over the past 12 months.

#14 The commodity price of wheat has approximately doubled since last summer.

#15 The commodity price of corn has also about doubled since last summer.

#16 The commodity price of soybeans is up about 50% since last June.

#17 The commodity price of orange juice has doubled since 2009.

#18 There are about 3 billion people around the globe that live on the equivalent of 2 dollars a day or less and the world was already on the verge of economic disaster before this year even began.

#19 2011 has already been one of the craziest years since World War 2.  Revolutions have swept across the Middle East, the United States has gotten involved in the civil war in Libya, Europe is on the verge of a financial meltdown and the U.S. dollar is dying.  None of this is good news for global food production.

#20 There have been persistent rumors of shortages at some of the biggest suppliers of emergency food in the United States.  The following is an excerpt from a recent “special alert” posted on Raiders News Network….

Look around you. Read the headlines. See the largest factories of food, potassium iodide, and other emergency product manufacturers literally closing their online stores and putting up signs like those on Mountain House’s Official Website and Thyrosafe’s Factory Webpage that explain, due to overwhelming demand, they are shutting down sales for the time being and hope to reopen someday.

So what does all of this mean?

It means that time is short.

For years, many “doom and gloomers” have been yelling and screaming that a food crisis is coming.

Well, up to this point there hasn’t been much to get alarmed about.  Food prices have started to rise, but the truth is that our stores are still packed to the rafters will gigantic amounts of relatively cheap food.

However, you would have to be an idiot not to see the warning signs.  Just look at what happened in Japan after March 11th.  Store shelves were cleared out almost instantly.

It isn’t going to happen today, and it probably isn’t going to happen tomorrow, but at some point a major league food crisis is going to strike.

So what are you and your family going to do then?

You might want to start thinking about that.

Why Do So Many Bad Things Keep Happening To The United States?

At a time when the American economy is already reeling like a drunken sailor, the United States is being hit by what seems like an endless parade of horrible disasters that threaten to push the fragile financial system over the edge.  The massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico that is now destroying not only the the entire economy of the Gulf Coast but also the entire way of life for hundreds of thousands of people is getting all the headlines right now, but it is far from the only major crisis that has hit the United States recently.  The old saying, “when it rains it pours”, is certainly applicable to the United States right now.  Already faced with some of the biggest economic problems in a generation, America is also being forced to deal with horrifying natural disasters, rapidly growing environmental nightmares and agricultural problems that could end up being absolutely unprecedented.  So why do so many bad things keep happening to the United States?  Does there come a point when the economic damage from all of these disasters just becomes too much?  After all, how many body blows can the “biggest economy in the world” take and still remain standing?  

Consider just a few of the major disasters that the U.S. is having to deal with….

*The Gulf Of Mexico Oil Spill

Industry experts are now saying that the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico could be increasing at a rate of 25,000 barrels a day – five times the U.S. government’s current estimate.  In fact, Barack Obama is calling the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico a potentially unprecedented environmental disaster.

So how much is this disaster going to cost?

Well, estimates vary at this point, but it is being reported that some analysts are already projecting that the costs related to the oil spill drifting toward Louisiana from a well operated by BP in the Gulf of Mexico could exceed 14 billion dollars.

The cost to the fishing industry in Louisiana alone could top 3 billion dollars, and it is being projected that the tourism industry in Florida could lose even more than that. 

This is rapidly shaping up as one of the biggest environmental nightmares (perhaps the biggest) that the United States has ever had to face.  In fact, there are some who are saying that this incident has already eclipsed the 1989 Exxon Valdez incident as the worst U.S. oil disaster in history.

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal is warning that the oil spill in the Gulf threatens the very way of life of people in his state.  As bad as Hurricane Katrina was, there are those who are already claiming that this disaster will be worse than Hurricane Katrina for the region, because it will literally take years for this mess to be cleaned up.  In fact, there is a very real possibility that the fishing industry may be crippled for generations by this disaster.

*The Disappearance Of The Honeybees

For the fourth year in a row in the United States, more than a third of all bee colonies have failed to survive the winter.

To be more precise, according to the annual survey by the Apiary Inspectors of America and the U.S. government’s Agricultural Research Service, the number of managed honeybee colonies in the United States fell by 33.8% last winter.

Needless to say, this is not a good trend.

In fact, it could quickly turn into an unmitigated disaster as it is estimated that a third of all that we eat depends upon honeybee pollination.

Are you starting to get the picture?

Most flowering plants require insects for pollination.  The most effective insect for pollination is the honeybee.

Without honeybees, we are going to be in a world of hurt.

According to WorldNetDaily, the following is a list of just some of the crops that depend on honeybees: almonds, apples, apricots, avocados, blueberries, boysenberries, cherries, citrus fruits, cranberries, grapes, kiwi, loganberries, macadamia nuts, nectarines, olives, peaches, pears, plums, raspberries, strawberries, asparagus, broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, celery, cucumbers, cantaloupe, honeydew, onions, pumpkins, squash, watermelon, alfalfa hay and seed, cotton lint, cotton seed, legume seed, peanuts, rapeseed, soybeans, sugar beets and sunflowers.

In fact, Ohio State University’s honeybee specialist, James Tew, recently told the following to the Dayton Daily News….

“The average person should care. Bees of all species are fundamental to the operation of our ecosystem.”

So what happens if they all die off?

You don’t even want to think about that.

But certainly our scientists can find a solution, right?

Well, the World Organization for Animal Health announced on Wednesday that the huge die off of bees worldwide is not due to any one single factor.

Some of the factors for the honeybee deaths the World Organization for Animal Health included in its report include parasites, viral and bacterial infections, pesticides, and poor nutrition.

Other researchers claim that genetically modified crops and cell phone transmissions are also playing a role in the disappearance of the honeybees.

But the truth is that a “solution” seems to be very far away right now and we are running out of time.

*The Deadly Tornadoes Which Have Ravaged The Southeast

Last Sunday saw an unprecedented outbreak of tornadoes across the southeast United States.  Officials said 61 tornadoes erupted as a massive storm marched across states such as Mississippi, Florida and South Carolina. 

Winds inside some of the tornadoes were clocked as high as 160 mph, and one of the tornadoes had a base one and a half miles wide.

The tornadoes killed at least 12 people, and it is estimated that the damage that they caused could reach into the billions of dollars.

*The Drying Up Of The Ogallala Aquifer

Most Americans have never heard of the Ogallala Aquifer, but it is absolutely critical to food production in many areas of the United States.

The water from this massive underground lake is used to irrigate much of America’s Great Plains.  But it is being drained at a rate of approximately 800 gallons per minute and it is starting to dry up.  

So why is that a bad thing?

Well, the Ogallala Aquifer is a gigantic underground lake that stretches from southern South Dakota all the way through northern Texas, covering approximately 174,000 square miles.

If it gets depleted, the era of “pivot irrigation” in the region will be over.  That would mean that the Great Plains could quickly turn into the Great American Desert. 

America could very well see a return to the Dust Bowl days of the 1930s.

Are you prepared for that?

Even if agricultural production continues to grow normally, scientists are telling us that the world is heading for a massive global food shortage.  So what happens if our food production does not increase or is even reduced?

Sadly, the United States has only enough grain stored up to give about a half a loaf of bread to every man, woman and child in the United States.

How long do you think that is going to last in the event of a major emergency?

The truth is that “the good times” we have all grown up with are not going to last forever.  The United States is in big trouble economically, and all of these natural disasters and environmental problems are not helping things one bit. 

We are not entitled to endless wealth and prosperity just because we are Americans.  In fact, we have recklessly squandered the wealth that prior generations have left for us. 

But even as the economy crumbles around them, millions of Americans will remain in denial until the day they have to cook a dinner of “mouse soup” for their starving family.

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