Is the prepper movement in the United States dying? At one time it was estimated that there were 3 million preppers in the United States, but in late 2016 interest in prepping has hit a multi-year low. The big reason for this, of course, is that the election of Donald Trump has fueled a tremendous wave of optimism among those that consider themselves to be conservatives, patriots and evangelical Christians. Not since the election of Ronald Reagan has the mood on the right shifted in such a positive direction so suddenly. But now that everyone is feeling so good about things, very few people still seem interested in prepping for hard times ahead. In fact, it is like a nuclear bomb went off in the prepping community.
As the publisher of The Economic Collapse Blog, I am in contact with a lot of people that serve the prepping community. And I can tell you that sales of emergency food and supplies have been crashing since Donald Trump’s surprise election victory. Firms that help people relocate outside of the United States have seen business really dry up, and I know of one high profile individual that has actually decided to move back to the country after Trump’s victory. It is almost as if the apocalypse has been canceled and the future history of the U.S. has been rewritten with a much happier ending.
Personally, I am quite alarmed that so many people are suddenly letting their guard down, but it is difficult to convince people to be vigilant when things seem to be going so well. Just consider some of the things that have been happening in recent weeks…
-Donald Trump was just named Time Magazine’s Person of the Year.
-The Dow just keeps setting brand new record high after brand new record high. In fact, the Dow has now risen by more than 1,200 points since Donald Trump won the election.
-The Russell 2000 has shot up an astounding 13 percent just since Trump’s victory.
-Donald Trump has convinced heating, ventilation and air conditioning giant Carrier to keep about 1,000 jobs in the United States instead of shipping them to Mexico.
-Donald Trump has convinced SoftBank to invest 50 billion dollars and create 50,000 new jobs in the United States.
-The U.S. dollar index recently hit the highest level that we have witnessed since March 2003.
-We just learned that U.S. Steel wants to bring back somewhere around 10,000 jobs to communities that lost them.
At this point there is an overwhelming belief among those on the right that Donald Trump is going to be able to do what he has promised to do.
And the numbers back this up. In a previous article, I discussed the fact that a recent Gallup survey discovered that the percentage of Republicans that believe that the U.S. economy is “getting better” increased from just 16 percent immediately prior to the election to 49 percent immediately after the election.
I don’t recall ever seeing such a shift in public sentiment in just a few days. Tens of millions of Americans have put their faith in Donald Trump, and time will tell if he will be able to deliver. As billionaire Mark Cuban recently pointed out, Donald Trump is like a number one draft pick that has not proven himself yet…
“I’ll analogize it to the NBA draft: He’s the No. 1 pick,” Cuban said. “He’s who we put our hopes and dreams with, and we’re going to believe in him. Right now it’s a little bit easier because we haven’t played a game yet.”
“There’s no reason to rush to judgment or come to any conclusions now,” he continued. “Let’s see what happens starting January 21 and go from there. I hope he’s a superstar, and I hope everything turns out the way we all hope it will. But until January 21, there’s no real point at going into detail.”
Let us hope that President Trump will be everything that people are hoping that he will be.
I would love it if 2017 is a year filled with peace and prosperity. That way I could write less about our economic troubles and instead do more of the positive stories that I have been sharing lately. And my wife and I could take some time off and just spend some time enjoying our quiet life up here in the mountains.
I don’t think that is the way it is going to go, but I do hope that the optimists are right.
At this point I could start listing out all of the reasons why our economy is doomed no matter who is president, but unless you are already convinced all of that reasoning would probably fall on deaf ears.
Tens of millions of Americans are completely convinced that we are heading into a new golden era for America just because Donald Trump won the election, and for the sake of the nation let us hope that they are correct.
But what if they are wrong?
What if the rioting, violence and civil unrest that the radical left is planning for the Inauguration on January 20th sparks a movement that plunges many of our major cities into chaos throughout Trump’s presidency?
What if all of the incredibly bad decisions that were made during the Obama years result in the biggest economic downturn we have ever seen early in the Trump years?
What if Trump’s inability to get along with China results in a major trade war between the two largest economies on the entire planet?
What if the growing financial instability in Europe results in a new global financial crisis that Trump will not be able to do anything to stop?
I could go on and on, but I think that you get the point.
All of the things that myself and other watchmen have been warning about all this time are coming.
My hope is that the optimists are right and that the horrible events that are coming will be put off for as long as possible.
But I wouldn’t count on it.
A day of reckoning for America is fast approaching, and those that are wise understand the signs of the times.
Is the time for warning people to prepare for what is ahead coming to an end? For years, bold men and women all over America have been sounding the alarm and warning people to get prepared physically, financially, mentally, emotionally and spiritually for the great storm that is rapidly approaching. Personally, I have written more than 2,500 articles on my primary two websites combined, and so nobody can accuse me of not blowing the trumpet. It has gotten to the point that sometimes I am even tired of listening to myself warn the people. But now we are shifting into a new phase.
The other day I was reflecting on some of the things that I have been hearing lately. Sales of emergency food and supplies are way down across the entire industry. Many organizations and websites that have been instrumental in sounding the alarm for a long time are really struggling right now. On my websites, traffic has hit a bit of a plateau after experiencing a tremendous surge late last year. Overall, “prepping” was very hot just a few years ago, and at one time it was estimated that there were approximately three million “preppers” in the United States. But these days there seems to be a tremendous amount of apathy out there.
As I reflected on all of this, I came to one inescapable conclusion.
Those that wanted to get prepared have already gotten prepared by now, and those that did not want to get prepared are not likely to do so any time soon.
I personally know a lot of people that are very, very prepared and have been for a long time. Yes, there is still a small minority of people out there that only recently woke up and started prepping, but overall most of the preparation that people wanted to do has already been completed. And for those that have not done anything to prepare, you could argue with them until the moon turns to cheese and they still won’t take any action.
At this point the die has been cast. Most of those that felt that they should prepare have already prepared. Most of those that felt that they should repent have already repented. Most of those that felt that they should warn America have already sounded the alarm.
So now all that is left is to wait for the shaking to begin.
In looking back at what has transpired over the last several years, I think that it would be appropriate to say something about the failure of the church in America.
You see, if the churches of America were doing their job, all of the “watchmen” out there would not even be needed. Our voices would simply be lost in a chorus of thousands upon thousands of pastors, teachers, ministers and evangelists boldly warning people about what is coming to this nation.
But instead, there is just deafening silence coming from most of the mainstream churches.
The sad thing is that many, many church leaders understand very clearly what is coming, but they have purposely chosen not to warn the people. Some time ago, George Barna conducted a study that looked into why our churches are not addressing the key issues of the day, and what he discovered was absolutely astounding…
“‘What we’re finding is that when we ask them about all the key issues of the day, [90 percent of them are] telling us, ‘Yes, the Bible speaks to every one of these issues,” he explained. “Then we ask them: ‘Well, are you teaching your people what the Bible says about those issues?’ and the numbers drop…to less than 10 percent of pastors who say they will speak to it.”
Most churches in America don’t want to talk about the hard things, because they desperately want to make people feel comfortable. They want to entertain people and make them happy so that they will come back week after week and drop their money into the offering plate.
When it comes to defining success as a church, Barna found that there were five primary factors that were important to the majority of pastors, and none of them had anything to do with repentance and salvation through Jesus Christ…
“There are five factors that the vast majority of pastors turn to,” he outlined. “Attendance, giving, number of programs, number of staff, and square footage.”
Sadly, most Christians in America actually prefer these lukewarm churches, and the Apostle Paul warned that these times were coming nearly 2000 years ago. The following is what 2 Timothy 4:3-4 says in the Modern English Version…
3 For the time will come when people will not endure sound doctrine, but they will gather to themselves teachers in accordance with their own desires, having itching ears, 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth and turn to myths.
You may not want to hear this, but the majority of churches in America have already gone apostate, and that is the truth.
We are slowly but surely losing an entire generation of Americans, and yet our dead and dying churches just continue to slumber. I shared the following numbers in a previous article, but they bear repeating. The following comes directly out of a Pew Research Center report…
Millennials – especially the youngest Millennials, who have entered adulthood since the first Landscape Study was conducted – are far less religious than their elders. For example, only 27% of Millennials say they attend religious services on a weekly basis, compared with 51% of adults in the Silent generation. Four-in-ten of the youngest Millennials say they pray every day, compared with six-in-ten Baby Boomers and two-thirds of members of the Silent generation. Only about half of Millennials say they believe in God with absolute certainty, compared with seven-in-ten Americans in the Silent and Baby Boom cohorts. And only about four-in-ten Millennials say religion is very important in their lives, compared with more than half in the older generational cohorts.
Those numbers are absolutely horrifying. Yes, there are still a few really good churches scattered across the country. But overall, the church in America is in really sorry shape, and the numbers don’t lie. Christianity is in rapid decline in the United States, and somebody better wake up and start doing something about it.
Over the years, I can’t tell you how many dead churches that I have sat in. That is why it is so refreshing when I actually find one where the gospel is preached and where people truly love one another. I have had the privilege of sharing my message in such a church in recent months, and I wish that there were a lot more of them out there.
Unfortunately, most ministers in America are really busy doing things other than what they should be doing. For instance, have you ever heard of “clergy response teams”? If you can believe it, the government has actually recruited ministers to help the population accept martial law when it is declared someday. The following comes from KSLA News…
Could martial law ever become a reality in America? Some fear any nuclear, biological or chemical attack on U.S. soil might trigger just that. KSLA News 12 has discovered that the clergy would help the government with potentially their biggest problem: Us.
Can you believe that?
Here is more from the report…
Such clergy response teams would walk a tight-rope during martial law between the demands of the government on the one side, versus the wishes of the public on the other. “In a lot of cases, these clergy would already be known in the neighborhoods in which they’re helping to diffuse that situation,” assured Sandy Davis. He serves as the director of the Caddo-Bossier Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness.
For the clergy team, one of the biggest tools that they will have in helping calm the public down or to obey the law is the bible itself, specifically Romans 13. Dr. Tuberville elaborated, “because the government’s established by the Lord, you know. And, that’s what we believe in the Christian faith. That’s what’s stated in the scripture.”
I don’t know about you, but I found that article to be extremely chilling.
But this is the state of things in America today. We have a dead church that is stuffed to the gills with dead ministers, and the people are not being told the truth about the great shaking that is coming to America.
And when the great shaking comes, there will be multitudes of these dead churches and ministries that will go under and never rise again.
Meanwhile, God will be raising up a Remnant, and that Remnant is going to shake the world.
So what do you think about all of this?
Please feel free to share your thoughts by posting a comment below…
A global stock market crash has begun. European stocks are crashing, Chinese stocks are crashing, and commodities are crashing. And guess what? All of those things happened before U.S. stocks crashed in the fall of 2008 too. In so many ways, it seems like we are watching a replay of the financial crisis of 2008, but this time around the world is in far worse shape financially. Global debt levels are at an all-time high, the 75 trillion dollar global shadow banking system could implode at any time, and there are hundreds of trillions of dollars in derivatives that threaten to wipe out major banks all over the planet. The last major worldwide financial crash was almost seven years ago, and very little has been done since that time to prepare for the next one. If global markets do not calm down, we could see carnage in the months ahead that is absolutely unprecedented.
For months, European authorities have been promising us that a “Grexit” is already “priced in” to the markets and that any “contagion” from the Greek crisis will be “contained”. Of course everyone knew that was just a smokescreen. Just in the past couple of days since the Greek “no” vote, European stocks have already been crashing. The following comes from Zero Hedge…
Does this look contained to you?
Portugal, Spain, and Italy all collapsing…
As I mentioned at the top of this article, European stocks started crashing well before U.S. stocks started crashing during the last financial crisis. If you doubt this, just look at this chart, and this chart and this chart.
Will the same thing happen again this time?
And just like I have warned repeatedly, European bond yields have started to soar. When bond yields go up, bond prices go down, so many bond investors are losing a tremendous amount of money right now. Here is more from Zero Hedge…
European bond risk is anything but “contained” as GGB 10Y Yields top 18%…
If there is not a last minute deal between Greece and her creditors, what we have witnessed so far in the bond markets will just be the tip of the iceberg. In the months ahead, we could witness a bond crash unlike anything that we have ever seen in all of history. Just consider what Egon von Greyerz recently told Eric King…
There is no liquidity in this market and this is where we will soon see a problem. We will see the bond market totally seizing up in the next few months. Eric, people simply don’t understand that this is a much bigger problem than Greece.
So we are talking about a worldwide problem, not just a Greek problem. The majority of the $100 trillion bond market is worthless, and of course a ticking time-bomb of over $1 quadrillion worth of derivatives is linked to that. This means that, sadly, we are heading into a major contagion that will lead to financial catastrophe for the world. This will also lead to an implosion of all bubble assets across the globe.
Hmm – there is that word “derivatives” again.
It is funny how that keeps popping up.
As things unravel over in Europe, a lot of desperate Europeans are feverishly purchasing physical gold. The following comes from Bloomberg…
European investors are increasing purchases of gold as Greece’s turmoil boosts the appeal for an alternative to the euro.
Demand from Greek customers for Sovereign gold coins was double the five-month average in June, the U.K. Royal Mint said in an e-mailed statement. CoinInvest.com, an online retailer, said sales on Saturday and Sunday were the highest since Cyprus limited cash withdrawals in 2013, driven by a jump in German, French and Greek buyers.
Investors are searching for a safe haven after Greece imposed capital controls, closed banks and stopped selling gold coins to the public until at least July 6.
Meanwhile, Chinese stocks have continued to fall. Overall, Chinese stocks have fallen 27 percent since the peak, and a whopping 3.2 trillion dollars of “paper wealth” has been wiped out in China in just the last three weeks.
At this point things are so bad that about one-fourth of all stocks in China have already suspended trading according to CNN…
The turmoil in China’s stock market is so bad that some companies are calling it quits.
Over 700 Chinese companies have halted trading to “self preserve,” according to the state media. That means about a quarter of the companies listed on China’s two big exchanges — the Shanghai and Shenzhen — are no longer trading.
Desperate measures are being employed to try to stop the stock market crash in China. For example, over the weekend an alliance of securities brokerages pledged to invest “at least 120 billion yuan” in order to stabilize stock prices…
China’s top 21 securities brokerages said on Saturday they would collectively invest at least 120 billion yuan ($19.3 billion) to help stabilize the country’s stock markets after a slump of nearly 30 percent since mid-June. In addition, 57 Chinese mutual funds are reportedly investing 2.2 billion yuan in stock funds.
The Chinese central bank has gotten involved as well. In fact, the People’s Bank of China has taken the dramatic step of actually directly loaning money to brokerages…
In an extraordinary move, the People’s Bank of China has begun lending money to investors to buy shares in the flailing market. The Wall Street Journal reports this “liquidity assistance” will be provided to the regulator-owned China Securities Finance Corp, which will lend the money to brokerages, which will in turn lend to investors.
The dramatic intervention marks the first time funds from the central bank have been directed anywhere other than the banks, signalling serious concern from authorities about the crisis.
In addition, the Chinese government has taken the following steps to intervene…
-All short selling of stocks has been banned.
-China’s national social security fund has been banned from selling stocks, but they can continue to buy stocks.
-Local media has been banned from using the terms “equity disaster” and “rescue the market” in their news reports.
But despite everything that you just read, Chinese stocks have still been falling.
Meanwhile, global commodity prices are crashing. Just check out this chart. This is also something that happened before U.S. stocks crashed back in 2008.
Thankfully, U.S. stocks have not started crashing yet. But it should be noted that the “smart money” in the United States has been selling stocks like crazy since the “no” vote in the Greek referendum. And if the patterns that we witnessed seven years ago hold up, it is just a matter of time before we experience a stock market crash too.
Incredibly, there are a lot of people out there that very strongly believe that everything is going to be just fine. They have tremendous faith in the central bankers and in our political leaders, and they are assuring all the rest of us that there is no possible way that the global financial system could be brought down again.
I truly wish that they were right. If everything was going to be just fine, instead of writing about the coming economic collapse I could write about sports or do a blog dedicated to LOLcats. But of course the truth is that the “hopetimists” are dead wrong.
A great shaking is coming to our world, and life as we know it is about to change in a major way.
What do we need to do in order to prepare for the coming economic collapse? Are there practical steps that we can take right now that will help us and our families survive the economic depression that is approaching? As the publisher of The Economic Collapse Blog, I get asked these kinds of questions a lot. Once people become convinced that an economic collapse is coming, they want to know what they should do. And so in this article I am going to share some key pieces of advice from some of the top experts in the entire country. If you are not convinced that economic disaster is on the way, this article might not be for you. Instead, I would encourage you to go to my website where you will find more than 1,200 articles that set out the case for the coming economic collapse in excruciating detail. For those of you that are interested in getting prepared, I apologize in advance for the outline format of this article. To examine each of these points in detail would take an entire book. In fact, I am the co-author of a book that will soon be published that discusses many of these things in great depth. But you don’t have to wait for a book to get prepared. Mostly, it comes down to common sense. In this article, I share 89 common sense tips that will help you get prepared for the coming economic depression. Hopefully a lot of people will find these to be very helpful.
This first set of tips are 11 things that I strongly encourage my readers to do…
#1 Have An Emergency Fund – This is so important that I wrote an entire article about this recently.
#2 Don’t Put All Of Your Eggs Into One Basket – In addition to having an emergency fund, you will also want to have gold, silver and other hard assets. It is also a very good idea to keep a limited amount of cash at home in case you can’t access an ATM during a major emergency of some sort.
#3 Reduce Your Expenses And Get Out Of Debt – During a time of crisis you want to be as “lean and mean” as possible. If you simplify your life and reduce your debt load now, you will be in much better shape when the next economic depression does arrive.
#4 Move Your Money Away From Unsafe Investments – When the financial world falls apart, you don’t want your finances to be exposed. Markets tend to go down much faster than they go up, and during the next great financial crisis millions of Americans that have their life savings in stocks and bonds are going to get totally wiped out.
#5 Store Food And Supplies – Your dollars will never stretch farther than they do right now. You probably will not need emergency food and supplies in the short-term, but the truth is that none of us ever knows when a major emergency will strike. During 2014, my wife and I felt more of an urgency to stock up then ever before, and I hope that people are using this brief period of relative stability to do what they can to get prepared.
#6 Learn To Grow Your Own Food – Anything that you can do to become more independent of the system is a good thing. This includes growing your own food. And the truth is that some of the most expensive items in the grocery store these days are fresh fruits and vegetables.
#7 Defending Yourself And Your Family – As our world become increasingly unstable, people are going to become a lot more desperate. And desperate people do desperate things. You are going to need to have a plan for that.
#8 Move Away From The Big Cities If Possible – For a lot of people that are dependent on their current jobs, this is simply not possible right now. But if it is possible for you, this is something that I strongly recommend that you think about. Being stuck in the middle of a major city is not going to be a good place to be in the years ahead.
#9 Be Ready To Bug Out – There may come a time when you are forced to evacuate from your current location. This may happen with very short notice. If this ever does happen to you, the key will be to be prepared for it.
#10 Build A Community – Your neighbors and close friends can be an invaluable resource. A cord of multiple threads is not easily broken, and if you have people that you can depend upon during a crisis that can make a world of difference.
#11 Have A Back-Up Plan And Be Flexible – Mike Tyson once aptly observed that everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth. The years ahead are going to require a great deal of flexibility, and you may find that the plans that you have made need to be altered. So don’t get fixated on just one approach.
When there is a major emergency, some of the most simple items suddenly become some of the most important.
The following are 11 items that I recommend that every household have on hand…
– an axe
– a can opener
– battery-powered radio
– extra batteries
– lighters or matches
– fire extinguisher
– sewing kit
– duct tape
And here are about a dozen more key items that should be on your list from Survival Mom…
- Lightsticks. You can pick up one of these every time you wander into a Home Depot. They don’t need batteries and can be hung around the neck with a string making it easier to spot everyone in your party when it gets dark. An alternative is the UVPaqlite, which never needs batteries.
- Wool socks and sweaters. People have literally frozen to death wearing their layers of cotton knit tees and hoodies. For true survival conditions, nothing beats wool.
- Upholstery needles and thread. What if a sleeping bag or tent rips and you have no way of mending it?
- Roll of quarters. Handy for phone calls, although payphones aren’t as common as they used to be, and laundromats, but if you put it in a sock and wield it like a sling, you have a handy-dandy weapon! If the quarters are pre-1965 and 90% silver, you have a whole new type of currency.
- Pencils. Forget the pens. They can run out of ink and freeze in cold weather. With a pocket knife, you’ll always have a sharp pencil.
- Super glue. Professional hockey players always have this on hand to seal up small cuts, and the glue itself is harmless. Unless you get it in your eye, like I did. But that’s a story for a different type of post!
- Rubber bands. String just doesn’t cut it when what you really need is a rubber band
- Tampons in a cardboard tube. Did you know a tampon can be fit snugly into a bullet wound? Guys on the battlefield carry these with them. Just be aware that the blood in the wound will begin to clot. Leave it to a medical professional to remove the tampon from the wound. They’re also good for kindling.
- Paracord belt. It’s an accessory and survival tool in one!
- Waterproof wrist watch. Makes perfect sense. I had just never thought of it.
- Animal repellant trash bags. Use these when you’re camping and animals will stay the heck away from your trash.
- Safety pins.
- Dental floss. Besides helping to keep your teeth clean, it makes sturdy thread for mending.
But don’t just get focused on acquiring things.
Some of the most important elements of preparation involve things that we need to do for ourselves.
Acclaimed survival expert James Wesley Rawles has put together a “personal list” of things that everyone should think about before a crisis strikes. A lot of these things are topics that “preppers” never seem to write about…
Prescription and nonprescription medications.
Keep dentistry up to date.
Any elective surgery that you’ve been postponing
Work off that gut.
Stay in shape.
Back strength and health—particularly important, given the heavy manual tasks required for self-sufficiency.
Educate yourself on survival topics, and practice them. For example, even if you don’t presently live at your retreat, you should plant a vegetable garden every year. It is better to learn through experience and make mistakes now, when the loss of crop is an annoyance rather than a crucial event.
“Comfort” items to help get through high stress times. (Books, games, CDs, chocolates, etc.)
If you have a serious illness or disease, that is going to need to be one of your top priorities when making preparations for the coming crisis.
This next tip comes from an excellent article that Dave Hodges published recently…
If you or your family has a chronic health condition, it is critical that you have 6 months to a year in medicine. Also, you should research natural alternatives to treatment for health conditions in case you are not able to meet this goal due to the inability to obtain prescriptions. Don’t forget to obtain some pain medication and antibiotics in case of unforeseen emergencies.
Probably one of the most popular topics for preppers to write about is food storage.
But those that are new to prepping are often very confused about how to get started.
It doesn’t have to be complicated. If you start out by focusing on staples that you eat all the time, you should be in great shape. The following are some recommendations about food storage that Pat Henry of the Prepper Journal has shared…
- Rice – First off, buy a 50lb. bag of rice. These contain 504 servings and I don’t know too many people who won’t eat rice. It is simple to cook and stores for years if you keep it cool and dry. This bag at Sam’s costs about $19 now.
- Beans – Next buy a bag of dry beans. This will check off the Beans part of your Beans, Bullets and Band-Aids list. A good size bag is about $5 and makes 126 servings. Buy two if you think your family would like them.
- Canned meat – Cans are great for fruits and vegetables and anyone can find something they will eat. For canned meat, I recommend tuna or chicken because it tastes a heck of a lot better than Spam and you can easily mix that into your rice. For the meat you will need approximately 35 cans. Each can has about 3 servings and this will be the most costly, but they last over a year usually and your family probably eats chicken or tuna on a semi-regular basis anyway so restocking this should be simple.
- Canned Vegetables – you will need about 40 cans of vegetables and again this can be whatever your family will eat. Expect to pay around a dollar each so $40 for veggies to last your family a month.
- Canned Fruit – again, simple fruits that your family will eat. These can even be fruit cocktail if that is the safest thing. At Costco they have the #10 cans of fruit like pears or apple slices and each of these has 25 servings. 5 of these will cost about $25 and give your family their daily dose of fruit.
- Oatmeal – Good old-fashioned oatmeal is simple to cook and store. A normal container has 30 servings each so purchase about 4 of these and your family won’t starve for breakfast. At $2 each that is about $8 for breakfast for a month for a family of four. Could you exchange Pop-tarts? Maybe, but I find oatmeal more filling and less likely to be snacked on.
- Honey– Honey is a miracle food really as it will never go bad if you keep it dry and cool. Honey will last you forever and Sam’s has large containers that hold 108 servings. You can use this in place of sugar to satisfy the sweet tooth. Honey even has medicinal properties and you can use this to add some flavor to your oatmeal for breakfast.
- Salt – Same as honey, salt will never go bad if you keep it dry and helps the flavor of anything. You can buy a big box of salt for around $1 and that will last your whole family a month easily.
- Vitamins – I recommend getting some multivitamins to augment your nutrition in the case of a disaster or emergency. Granted, rice and beans aren’t the best and you won’t be getting as many nutrients from canned fruit and vegetables so the vitamins help to fill in the gaps and keep you healthy. One big bottle costs about $8. You will need to get a kids version too if you have children small enough that they can’t or won’t swallow a big multivitamin.
And as I mentioned above, another key to getting prepared is self-defense. If you make all the preparations in the world, but somebody comes along and steals them from you, they won’t end up doing you any good.
The following are some basic tips about home security from prepping expert Todd Sepulveda…
Front Door – Your front door is a layer. But it shouldn’t be your only layer. Besides reinforcing the strike plate with 2 inch screws, you should have a solid deadbolt. Another layer could be a storm door with a lock or even burglar bars. A good latch is valuable too! If you want to add even more layers, utilizing a security door bar is a good idea. But you don’t only want to make sure that your front door is securely layered. Take some time to layer all the doors in your home.
Windows – Every window has a lock. But you can add a layer by including sliding window locks for about $5. Other options would include tint or blinds, which would make it harder for someone to look inside your house.
Burglar Alarm – A burglar alarm is a serious layer. Alarms can be monitored by an alarm company or they can be self-monitored. Self-monitored systems have greatly advanced and will even allow you to view your home on your smartphone.
Dogs – A dog or dogs can be a great layer, especially if they bark. My dogs alert me the minute someone is in the front of the yard. They run and bark at the door and don’t stop until I open it. Outside dogs are a layer to your perimeter. A big dog on the other side of the fence will make any criminal think twice.
Outside Lights – Lights that are mounted on the outside of your home, especially ones that are triggered by motion sensors are a must! Roaches run when you turn on the lights! Someone who is watching your house will not want to approach it if they know the lights are going to draw attention to them.
Outside Landscaping – Bushes can be a layer around windows. It is important that you don’t create an environment that will create a hiding place for someone to lay in waiting. Make sure that the bushes you choose to plant are thorny and cause a lot of discomfort if someone wants to go through them.
Personal Defense – A firearm is a layer that you would want to have if needed. If you want to use something that is not so deadly, you can always pick up a can of ColdSteel Inferno to spray in someone’s face. Having a few of these cans hidden in different parts of the house is a good idea.
Safe Room – A safe room would be a last ditch layer. Some people are putting them into their homes. If this is a scenario you want to take, you should research the necessary components for a “safe” safe room.
Neighborhood Watch – Although a Neighborhood Watch isn’t just focused on your home, it is a layer that could cause the bad guys to go looking in a different neighborhood altogether. Neighborhoods that have a Neighborhood Watch usually post signs in the entrances of their neighborhood.
Neighbors – Even if you don’t have a Neighborhood Watch, you should get to know your neighbors, especially those pesky ones that stay in everyone’s business…because they are going to keep a lookout! You gotta take some bad with the good!
Street Lights – Sticking with your neighborhood, it would be a good idea to immediately report any street lights that are out to the city or county that manages them. Again, light causes the roaches to run for cover!
Signs – Don’t underestimate the power of a cheap sign. A sign on a fence that reads “Beware of Dog” or a Security company sign on the front lawn somewhere will cause the bad guys to think twice before attempting to break into your house.
If you do need to leave your home during a crisis, you should have a “bug out bag” ready for each member of your family.
The following are 7 key items that Survival Cache recommends including in each bug out bag…
5. First Aid Kit
6. Basic Gear
Finally, it is important to remember that nobody is perfect and that everyone makes mistakes.
The following are 14 common mistakes that Backdoor Survival says a lot of preppers make…
1. Failure to inventory stored food supplies
2. Failure to perform a risk analysis and prepping for the most likely disruptive events first
3. Preparing mostly to bug out rather than bugging in
4. Failure to evacuate at just the right time
5. Having the gear but not knowing how to use it
6. Underestimating other humans as a threat
7. Spending your entire budget on gear instead of on food, water, and medical supplies
8. Lacking the knowledge to properly store your food supplies
9. Buying gear and supplies while ignoring the need to develop skills
10. Relying only on yourself and ignoring like-minded members of your community
11. Just because someone else does something does not mean that you should do it to
12. Falling victim to prepper procrastination
13. Obsessing about being behind the curve-ball
14. Forgetting that there is a life beyond prepping
Are there any additions that you would make to this list of tips?
Please feel free to add to the discussion by posting a comment below…
Does being a prepper show a lack of faith in God? Should good Christians reject prepping altogether? Yesterday, someone actually accused me of being “anti-faith” because I am encouraging people to prepare for the coming economic collapse. This person believes that if I had faith, then I would make “no provision” for what is ahead and simply trust “in God’s providence alone”. So is that person right? Is it really “anti-faith” to prepare for the coming economic collapse? I spent quite a bit of time thinking about these questions today.
Those that visit my site on a regular basis know that I am a Christian and I am very open about that fact. I am someone that places a very high value on faith. The Scriptures tell us to “trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding”. Without God, none of us has any hope. In fact, without God I would probably be dead by now.
But faith is not about sitting on your couch and waiting for God to do everything for you. Rather, faith is about taking action on what God has directed you to do.
What I don’t understand is why any of these Christians that are 100% against prepping continue to go to work. If we are to make “no provision” for ourselves and simply trust “in God’s providence alone”, then why do they need to earn a paycheck? Why can’t they just sit home and wait for God to fill up their bank accounts?
Yes, God can do mind blowing supernatural things that require absolutely no participation on our part. I know, because it has happened to me. But the vast majority of the time, God works with us. He requires us to take steps of faith and obedience, and in the process He leads us, He guides us, He blesses us and He opens doors for us.
The story of Noah is a perfect example of this. He was perhaps the very first “prepper”. God could have kept Noah and his family safe from the flood by transporting them to some sort of very comfortable “heavenly waiting area” and brought them back when everything was dry, but He didn’t do that. Instead, God warned Noah about what was coming and ordered him to build a boat.
So did Noah just sit back and wait for God to do everything for Him? No, he exercised his faith by taking action. He believed the warning and he built a giant boat. In Hebrews 11:7, Noah is commended for his radical faith which produced radical action…
By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that is in keeping with faith.
Faith almost always involves action. God wants to see if we are going to believe Him and do what He has instructed us to do.
And the amount of faith that Noah exhibited was staggering. The boat that he and his family built was approximately the size of a World War II aircraft carrier. It took a very, very long time to build that boat and collect all of the food and supplies for his family and for all of the animals.
And surely Noah must have gotten very tired of all of the mocking as he warned everyone else about what was coming for decades.
But in the end, Noah’s prepping paid off. He and his family were saved, and everyone else drowned.
Unfortunately, there are lots of Christians out there today that are 100% against preparing for what is ahead, even though they will admit that an economic collapse is coming.
The individual that accused me of being “anti-faith” is an example of this. The following is an excerpt from the message that this person wrote to me…
Now, although I agree with you about the things you write about the corruption of the financial system, and that there will be a collapse, yet I do not agree with you in promoting people to be self-sufficient contrary to the Lord’s teaching. If you truly have God then no provision needs to be made at all for yourself, just trust in God’s providence alone.
This individual agrees that a collapse is coming, but insists that we should do absolutely nothing to prepare for it.
Is that really what God would have us do?
In Genesis 41, God revealed to Joseph that there would be seven good years followed by seven lean years. So did Joseph party for seven years and “trust in God’s providence alone” for the lean years?
No, Joseph engaged in an “emergency food storage project” unlike anything that the world had ever seen up until that point. By heeding God’s warning and taking action, he ended up saving the nation of Egypt and his entire family.
Some people believe that preparing for hard times means that you are “fearful”, but I don’t see it that way at all.
Rather, I believe that there is hope in understanding what is happening and that there is hope in getting prepared.
The people that stick their heads in the sand right now are going to get blindsided by what is coming. Many of them will totally give in to despair when they realize that they have lost everything.
I think that we would all benefit greatly by taking advantage of the wisdom found in Proverbs 6:6-11…
Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest.
How long will you lie there, you sluggard? When will you get up from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest— and poverty will come on you like a thief and scarcity like an armed man.
You don’t prepare when the storm hits. Rather, you prepare while the storm is still off in the distance.
Throughout the Scriptures, those that “prepare” are commended.
For example, just check out the following parable of Jesus that we find in Matthew 25…
“At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. The wise ones, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep.
“At midnight the cry rang out: ‘Here’s the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’
“Then all the virgins woke up and trimmed their lamps. 8 The foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil; our lamps are going out.’
“‘No,’ they replied, ‘there may not be enough for both us and you. Instead, go to those who sell oil and buy some for yourselves.’
“But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut.
“Later the others also came. ‘Lord, Lord,’ they said, ‘open the door for us!’
“But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you.’
“Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.
Do we want to be like the wise virgins or the foolish virgins?
Yes, we never want to become obsessed with material things. We need to keep our priorities in order and focus on the things that are really important.
But that doesn’t mean that we can all just sit on our couches, eat chips, and wait for God to do everything for us.
In my opinion, we have been warned about the coming economic collapse in a multitude of different ways. At this point, what is coming should be glaringly obvious to anyone with half a brain.
On my site, I have shared thousands upon thousands of facts and statistics that show that a horrific economic collapse is coming. If you are new to all of this, the following are just a couple of articles that can get you started…
-“40 Statistics About The Fall Of The U.S. Economy That Are Almost Too Crazy To Believe”
-“Show This To Anyone That Believes That Things Are Getting Better In America”
I am trying to do my best to warn people about what is coming from my little spot on the wall. In the Scriptures, those that are aware that a threat is coming are responsible for warning others about it. The following is a short excerpt from Ezekiel 33…
Son of man, speak to your people and say to them: ‘When I bring the sword against a land, and the people of the land choose one of their men and make him their watchman, and he sees the sword coming against the land and blows the trumpet to warn the people, then if anyone hears the trumpet but does not heed the warning and the sword comes and takes their life, their blood will be on their own head. Since they heard the sound of the trumpet but did not heed the warning, their blood will be on their own head. If they had heeded the warning, they would have saved themselves. But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet to warn the people and the sword comes and takes someone’s life, that person’s life will be taken because of their sin, but I will hold the watchman accountable for their blood.’
Are you a watchman on the wall?
Are you blowing your trumpet?
That is one of the reasons why I work so hard on my articles. I hope that people will use them as a tool to help warn others about what is coming.
My goal is never to create fear. Rather, my goal is to wake people up and give them hope.
Yes, very, very painful economic times are coming.
Those that heed the warnings and diligently prepare will have a good chance of weathering the coming storm.
I honestly don’t know what those that have made absolutely no preparations are going to do.
Reckless money printing by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has pumped up the Dow to a brand new all-time high. So what comes next? Will the Dow go even higher? Hopefully it will. In fact, it would be great if the Dow was able to hit 15,000 before it finally came crashing down. That would give all of us some more time to prepare for the nightmarish economic crisis that is rapidly approaching. As you will see below, the U.S. economy is in far, far worse shape than it was the last time the Dow reached a record high back in 2007. In addition, all of the long-term trends that are ripping our economy to shreds just continue to get even worse and our debt just continues to explode. Unfortunately, the Dow has become completely divorced from economic reality in recent years because of Fed manipulation. All of this funny money that the Federal Reserve has been cranking out has made the wealthy even wealthier, but this bubble will not last for too much longer. What goes up must come down. And remember, a bubble is always biggest right before it bursts.
Fortunately, it looks like an increasing number of people out there are starting to recognize that the primary reason why stocks have been going up is because of the Fed. Just check out this excerpt from a recent article by the USA Today editorial board…
The Federal Reserve’s purchases have driven interest rates to near zero. This has stimulated the economy but not without cost. Savers, particularly older ones trying to live on income from their investments, are starved for safe options. They’ve been forced into stocks, which is one reason the market has been acting as if it’s on steroids. Further, with borrowing costs low, Congress and the White House have less incentive to rein in the national debt. Rock-bottom interest rates have also distorted markets.
The best indication that the Fed’s bond-buying purchases are pushing stocks up artificially is that investors run for cover whenever there is a hint that the Fed might change course, as happened recently. On Monday, billionaire superinvestor Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett told CNBC that markets are on a “hair trigger” waiting for signs of change from the Fed. The market is “hooked on the drug” of easy money, Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher told Reuters.
Fisher’s comparison of Fed policies to a drug is apt. Markets might not like the idea of the drug being withdrawn now, when the Fed holds a portfolio of $3 trillion. But the withdrawal symptoms will be a lot worse once the portfolio grows to $4 trillion, or more.
Those sentiments were echoed by Gordon Charlop, a trader at Rosenblatt Securities, during a recent appearance on CNBC…
“The Wizard of the Fed, Ben [Bernanke], has done a great job propping up the market, but the question is how does the wizard move the pin from the balloon without blowing the whole thing up?” said Charlop. “This is getting out of balance and he’s got to figure out a way to justify the levels that we’ve gotten to and draw back on some of the stimulus.”
Of course, in the end, the bursting of this bubble is going to be very messy.
The Fed has dramatically distorted the market in an attempt to make things look good, but now the financial markets are completely and totally addicted to easy money. Is there any chance that the Fed will be able to take away that easy money without causing disaster?
There are only a few ways that this current scenario can play out. The following is what Stanley Druckenmiller recently told CNBC…
“I don’t know when it’s going to end, but my guess is, it’s going to end very badly; and it’s going to end very badly because, again, when you get the biggest price in the world, interest rates, being manipulated you get a misallocation of resources and this is going to end in one of two ways – with a malinvestment bust which we got in ’07-’08 (we didn’t get inflation). We got a malinvestment bust because of the bubble that was created in housing. Or it could end with just monetizing the debt and off we go in inflation. So that’s a very binary outcome – they’re both bad.”
What the Fed has done to the money supply in recent years has been absolutely unprecedented. Just check out how our money supply has skyrocketed since the last financial crisis…
So what happens when the amount of money in an economy rises rapidly?
Well, if I remember Econ 101 correctly, that would mean that prices should go up.
And that is exactly what has happened. And since most of the money that the Fed has created has gone into the financial system first, it should not be a surprise that we have seen a bubble in financial assets.
In a previous article that I wrote last September, I warned that QE3 would cause stocks to go up…
So what have the previous rounds of quantitative easing accomplished? Well, they have driven up the prices of financial assets. Those that own stocks have done very well the past couple of years. So who owns stocks? The wealthy do. In fact, 82 percent of all individually held stocks are owned by the wealthiest 5 percent of all Americans. Those that have invested in commodities have also done very nicely in recent years. We have seen gold, silver, oil and agricultural commodities all do very well. But that also means that average Americans are paying more for basic necessities such as food and gasoline. So the first two rounds of quantitative easing made the wealthy even wealthier while causing living standards to fall for all the rest of us. Is there any reason to believe that QE3 will be any different?
Of course not.
So will stocks continue to go up indefinitely?
As I have also written about previously, the money printing that the Fed is doing right now is not nearly enough to stop the mammoth derivatives crisis that is coming.
A derivatives crisis was one of the primary reasons for the financial crash of 2008, but most Americans still have no idea what derivatives are.
They can be very complex, but I think that it is easiest just to think of them as side bets.
When someone buys a derivative, they are not buying anything real. They are simply betting that something will or will not happen.
For example, if you bet $100 that the Chicago Cubs will win the World Series this year, would you be “investing” in anything real?
Of course not.
Well, it is the same with most derivatives.
Today, Wall Street has become the biggest casino in the entire world and trillions of dollars of very reckless bets have been made.
In fact, most Americans would be absolutely shocked to learn how exposed to derivatives some of our largest financial institutions are. The following is an excerpt from one of my previous articles entitled “The Coming Derivatives Panic That Will Destroy Global Financial Markets“…
It would be hard to overstate the recklessness of these banks. The numbers that you are about to see are absolutely jaw-dropping. According to the Comptroller of the Currency, four of the largest U.S. banks are walking a tightrope of risk, leverage and debt when it comes to derivatives. Just check out how exposed they are…
Total Assets: $1,812,837,000,000 (just over 1.8 trillion dollars)
Total Exposure To Derivatives: $69,238,349,000,000 (more than 69 trillion dollars)
Total Assets: $1,347,841,000,000 (a bit more than 1.3 trillion dollars)
Total Exposure To Derivatives: $52,150,970,000,000 (more than 52 trillion dollars)
Bank Of America
Total Assets: $1,445,093,000,000 (a bit more than 1.4 trillion dollars)
Total Exposure To Derivatives: $44,405,372,000,000 (more than 44 trillion dollars)
Total Assets: $114,693,000,000 (a bit more than 114 billion dollars – yes, you read that correctly)
Total Exposure To Derivatives: $41,580,395,000,000 (more than 41 trillion dollars)
That means that the total exposure that Goldman Sachs has to derivatives contracts is more than 362 times greater than their total assets.
When the derivatives crash happens, there won’t be enough money in the entire world to fix it.
So enjoy this little stock market bubble while you can.
It will end soon enough.
And of course stocks should not be this high in the first place. The underlying economic fundamentals do not justify these kinds of stock prices whatsoever.
A recent CNN article noted that the last time the Dow hit a record high that unemployment in the U.S. was much lower…
Consider this. When the Dow hit its now old record high back in October 2007, the economy was still in good shape — although it was just a few months away from the beginning of the Great Recession.
The unemployment rate in October 2007 was 4.7%. In January of this year, the unemployment rate was 7.9%.
And that same article also pointed out that GDP growth and housing prices were also much stronger back in 2007…
Gross domestic product grew 3% in the third quarter of 2007. Revised figures from the government last week showed that GDP in the fourth quarter of 2012 rose a scant 0.1%. But I guess that’s good news considering the first estimate showed a 0.1% decline.
And despite all the hoopla about the steady recovery in the housing market over the past year, real estate is still in a bear market. The most recent level of the S&P Case-Shiller 20-City Home Price Index, one of the most widely watched gauges of the health of housing, is still 24% below where it was in October 2007.
We have never even come close to recovering from the last economic crisis. Most Americans seem to have forgotten how good things were back then, but a recent Zero Hedge article included some more points of comparison between October 2007 and today…
- Dow Jones Industrial Average: Then 14164.5; Now 14164.5
- Regular Gas Price: Then $2.75; Now $3.73
- GDP Growth: Then +2.5%; Now +1.6%
- Americans Unemployed (in Labor Force): Then 6.7 million; Now 13.2 million
- Americans On Food Stamps: Then 26.9 million; Now 47.69 million
- Size of Fed’s Balance Sheet: Then $0.89 trillion; Now $3.01 trillion
- US Debt as a Percentage of GDP: Then ~38%; Now 74.2%
- US Deficit (LTM): Then $97 billion; Now $975.6 billion
- Total US Debt Oustanding: Then $9.008 trillion; Now $16.43 trillion
- US Household Debt: Then $13.5 trillion; Now 12.87 trillion
- Labor Force Particpation Rate: Then 65.8%; Now 63.6%
- Consumer Confidence: Then 99.5; Now 69.6
And of course anyone that reads my site regularly knows that the U.S. economy has been in a state of persistent decline over the past several years.
Just consider the following data points…
-The percentage of the civilian labor force in the United States that is actually employed has been steadily declining every single year since 2006.
-In 2007, the unemployment rate for the 20 to 29 age bracket was about 6.5 percent. Today, the unemployment rate for that same age group is about 13 percent.
-According to one study, 60 percent of the jobs lost during the last recession were mid-wage jobs, but 58 percent of the jobs created since then have been low wage jobs.
-Median household income in America has fallen for four consecutive years. Overall, it has declined by more than $4000 during that time span.
-At this point, an astounding 53 percent of all American workers make less than $30,000 a year.
That is the other side of the Fed’s insidious money printing. Incomes in the United States are going down, but the cost of living is skyrocketing. This is squeezing millions of Americans out of the middle class…
When Debbie Bruister buys a gallon of milk at her local Kroger supermarket, she pays $3.69, up 70 cents from what she paid last year.
Getting to the store costs more, too. Gas in Corinth, Miss., her hometown, costs $3.51 a gallon now, compared to less than three bucks in 2012. That really hurts, considering her husband’s 112-mile daily round-trip commute to his job as a pharmacist.
Perhaps you can identify with this. Perhaps your paychecks are about the same as they used to be back in 2007 but the cost of living has gone up dramatically since then.
I wish I could tell you that things were going to get better, but unfortunately there are all kinds of indications that things are about to get even worse for the U.S. economy. If you doubt this, just read this article and this article.
Yes, the Dow is at an all-time high. But do you want to know what else has hit an all-time high up in New York?
The following is from a recent report in the New York Times…
An average of more than 50,000 people slept each night in New York City’s homeless shelters for the first time in January, a record that underscores an unsettling national trend: a rising number of families without permanent housing.
And apparently families and children have been hit particularly hard over the past year…
More than 21,000 children—an unprecedented 1% of the city’s youth—slept each night in a city shelter in January, an increase of 22% in the past year, the report said, while homeless families now spend more than a year in a shelter, on average, for the first time since 1987. In January, an average of 11,984 homeless families slept in shelters each night, a rise of 18% from a year earlier.
Of course New York is far from alone. There has been a surge in homelessness all over the United States. In fact, at this point more than a million public school students in the United States are homeless. This is the first time that has ever happened in U.S. history.
But the Dow just hit a record high so we should all be wildly happy, right?
Hopefully we can get more Americans to understand that the “prosperity” that we are enjoying right now is just an illusion. It isn’t real. It is a bubble created by reckless money printing by the Fed and reckless borrowing by the U.S. government. If you can believe it, the U.S. government borrowed another 253 billion dollars during the month of February alone.
The Fed and the U.S. government will continue to engage in this kind of reckless behavior until the bubble eventually bursts.
So what should all the rest of us do?
We should be feverishly preparing for the hard times that are coming. As Daisy Luther recently wrote about, one of the most important things to do is to create an emergency fund. Instead of going out and blowing your money on the latest toys and gadgets, set some money aside so that you will have something to live on if the economy crashes and you suddenly lose your income.
Just remember what happened back in 2008. Millions of Americans suddenly lost their jobs, and because many of them had no financial reserves, a lot of Americans suddenly could not pay their mortgages and they lost their homes.
So put some money away in a place where it will be safe – and that does not mean the stock market.
Jim Cramer of CNBC and a lot of the other talking heads on the financial news channels are trying to encourage ordinary Americans to jump into “the bull market” right now and make some money, and many people will take their advice.
But the truth is that a bubble is always biggest right before it bursts.
This bubble is awfully big right now, and I don’t know how much larger it can possibly get.
Do you think that is an alarmist headline? Well, I am not the one saying this. Law enforcement authorities all over the country are telling citizens that they can no longer deal with all the crime and that people need to lock their doors and prepare to defend their families. Just recently, the city attorney of San Bernardino, California told citizens to “lock their doors and load their guns” because there is not enough money to pay for adequate police protection any longer. The murder rate in San Bernardino is up 50 percent this year, but the city is dealing with bankruptcy and has been forced to lay off 80 police officers. But San Bernardino is not the only city dealing with this kind of a thing. In Oakland, burglaries are up 43 percent so far this year, and to say that there is a “crime wave” going on in Oakland would be a massive understatement. If you can believe it, in Oakland “more than 11,000 homes, cars or businesses have been broken into so far this year – translating to about 33 burglaries a day.” Sadly, there simply are not enough police to keep up with it all. Due to budget cuts, it is being projected that by February the size of the police force in Oakland will be about 25 percent smaller than it was back in 2008. But what is happening in Detroit is perhaps even more frightening. Today there are about 1,000 fewer police officers in Detroit than there was a decade ago. But crime just continues to rise. So now even the police are telling people to “enter Detroit at your own risk“. With very little police protection, an increasing number of citizens are taking matters into their own hands. As I noted in a previous article, justifiable homicide in the city of Detroit increased by 79 percent in 2011, and the rate of self-defense killings in Detroit is approximately 2200 percent above the national average. But don’t laugh at what is happening in cities like San Bernardino, Oakland and Detroit. What is happening in those cities will be coming to your community soon enough.
From coast to coast, criminals are becoming increasingly bold and increasingly desperate. My sister lives near a large city in the middle part of the country, and a house across the street from the one her family just moved into was recently vandalized. The criminals took all of the exposed copper pipe and copper wire that could be accessed easily.
Other criminals have become very focused on gold because it has soared in value and it is easy to resell. For example, there have been more than 250 gold chain robberies in Stockton, California just since the month of April. According to the CBS News affiliate in Sacramento, criminals are just ripping these chains right off of the necks of unsuspecting citizens, and many of the victims that have tried to resist have ended up getting hurt. Normally the criminals sell off the jewelry within 24 hours, so solving these crimes is a real challenge…
Most victims of the robberies are female (65 percent), and 44 percent of victims are age 50 or older, the data showed. The most common time of day for the crimes were between 12 and 5 p.m., though this only accounts for about a third of the crime.
Parino said robbers took even police by surprise initially.
“When [criminals] do these crimes, they normally get rid of the items within 24 hours,” he said.
That’s why police are now checking up on secondhand stores and pawn shops on a weekly basis.
Many dismiss reports such as these as “anomalies”, but how many “anomalies” do we need before we finally admit that we have a widespread problem in our society?
Personally, there are many major U.S. cities that I would not want to be living right in the middle of right now.
Just take a look at Chicago. It has become one of the deadliest major cities on the entire globe. In recent years we have seen massive cuts to the police budget coupled with a dramatic increase in gang activity in Chicago.
The murder rate in Chicago is way up this year and the police force is massively outnumbered.
As I have written about previously, there are only about 200 police officers assigned to Chicago’s Gang Enforcement Unit. It is their job to handle the estimated 100,000 gang members living in the city.
How would you like to be outnumbered 100,000 to 200?
When things really hit the fan, Chicago is going to be a complete and utter nightmare.
And sometimes we get a peek into how people will behave when things break down. Just look at what happened during the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
If you can believe it, some criminals actually took advantage of the Thanksgiving holiday to loot homes in the Breezy Point neighborhood of Queens. That was the neighborhood where approximately 100 homes burned down. The suffering of the residents of that neighborhood made headlines all over the nation. But that has not stopped criminals from moving in and taking advantage of their vulnerability…
Cops told the victims burglaries are on the rise in Breezy Point.
There were 14 home break-ins from Nov. 12 to Nov. 18, compared with none a year before.
And in the 28 days before that, there were 48 burglaries. Only four break-ins were reported in that time period the year before.
In the days after Sandy, some of the hardest-hit areas were plagued with store looting, home burglaries, street muggings and other crimes.
There are some very sick people out there. These days you simply do not know who you can trust. The person you meet on the street may be perfectly fine or they may be a total sicko. It is so hard to tell. But without a doubt there are a lot of sickos out there. Just check out what authorities in Pennsylvania found recently…
Animal welfare workers say 11 puppies were found dead and skinned near an eastern Pennsylvania park.
Sadly, authorities in that area had come across another similar incident recently…
The discovery is second disturbing incident in the county in less than a week. About 20 miles away in Lynn Township police say a dog was discovered skinned and cooked.
Who would do such things?
What in the world is happening to this country?
Things are changing, and this is just the tip of the iceberg. As conditions shift, we are all going to have to carefully evaluate what is necessary to protect our families. Don’t ignore all of the warning signs. Sticking our heads in the sand and pretending that everything is going to be okay is not going to help anything.
So what do all of you think about all of this? Please feel free to post a comment with your opinion below…
How in the world is someone supposed to actually prepare for an economic collapse? What should you do with your money? How can you make sure that your family is going to be okay? How can you prepare if your resources are extremely limited? These are the kinds of questions people ask me all the time. Once people understand that the economy has been collapsing and will continue to collapse, then the next step for most of them is that they want to get prepared for the storm that is coming. So where should someone get started? Well, the truth is that no two people are facing the exact same set of circumstances, so preparation is going to look different for each individual. But there are certain core principles that we can all benefit from. For example, when a financial storm is coming that is not the time to be blowing thousands of dollars on vacations and new toys. You would be surprised at how many people there are that claim that they have no extra money in their budgets and yet somehow have plenty of money to run down to Wal-Mart and buy a big stack of DVDs. When times are difficult, each hard-earned dollar becomes much more precious, and we all need to start getting into the habit of making the most out of our limited resources. The seemingly endless prosperity that we have all been enjoying for decades is coming to an end, and most of us have absolutely no experience on how to deal with truly hard times. If you are under the age of 60, it might be a really good idea to read a book or two on what conditions were like during the Great Depression of the 1930s. There is a lot that we can learn from our own history.
Another key characteristic that we will all need in the years ahead is flexibility. Anyone that has spent any time in the military knows that very few plans ever work out perfectly. As the global economy breaks down and the world becomes increasingly unstable, conditions are going to change rapidly. What might work really well in one situation might be the exact wrong thing to do 6 months later. If you are not willing or able to adapt to dramatic change then you are going to have a lot of difficulty in the years ahead.
Many people refer to me as a “doom and gloomer” because I run a website called “The Economic Collapse” and I am constantly pointing out that the entire world is heading for a complete and total financial nightmare.
But I don’t think that it does any good to stick your head in the sand. I believe that there is hope in understanding what is happening and I believe that there is hope in getting prepared.
It is those that are completely oblivious to what is really going on that will be totally blindsided by the coming crisis. When they finally realize what has come upon them many of them will totally lose it.
From my little spot on the wall I am trying my best to warn people so that they can have a chance to be prepared for what is coming.
I am not spreading doom and gloom.
I am spreading hope.
And I want to make another point. Generally, things are going to be getting progressively worse as the years roll along. As I have written about before, I believe that the economic collapse is not a single event. Rather, I see it as a series of waves that will be punctuated by moments of great crisis.
So advice about preparation is going to be different depending on whether you are talking about the short-term or the mid-term or the long-term. Hopefully you will keep that in mind as you read my answers to the questions below.
The following are common questions that people ask about how to prepare for the collapse of the economy….
#1 How Do I Get Started?
When the financial crisis of 2008 hit, what was the biggest danger for most Americans?
The biggest danger was that they would lose their jobs and not be able to pay their bills.
During the last recession, millions and millions of Americans did end up losing their jobs.
And because many of them were living paycheck to paycheck many of them also ended up losing their homes.
You do not want that to happen to you.
So what I am about to say next is not considered to be very “sexy” in prepper circles, but it is absolutely crucial advice.
You need to have an emergency fund saved up that can cover your expenses for at least six months.
That way if you lose your job or your business goes under you will be able to keep going for a while as you figure out what your next move will be.
These days it takes the average unemployed American nearly 40 weeks to find a new job, and it will likely be even worse in the next major economic downturn.
So make sure that you have plenty of cash saved up just in case. If you are currently living paycheck to paycheck you are extremely vulnerable.
#2 What Should I Do With My Money?
I get this question a lot.
People always want to know where they should put their money.
Well, my first piece of advice is always to build an emergency fund. See #1 above. Most people do not have one.
After that is done, I am a big believer in not putting all of my eggs into one basket.
Sometimes people will tell me that they are going to take all of their money out of the banks because they don’t feel safe having their money in them.
Well, if you stick all of your money in your mattress, what happens if there is a fire or what happens if someone robs you?
That is why I believe in spreading your risk around. Having money a bunch of different places is a good thing.
But one place I would not put it is in the stock market. If you were fortunate enough to catch the recent rally you should get out while the getting is good.
If you have blind faith in the stock market you are going to be deeply disappointed eventually. I do not have a single penny in the stock market, and a couple of years from now that is going to look like a very wise move.
#3 Should I Invest In Precious Metals?
A lot of people that write about the economic crisis in this country really advocate investing in precious metals because they tend to hold value over time (unlike fiat currencies).
I like precious metals myself, but if you are going to invest you need to get educated so that you know what you are doing. If you go in blindly you are likely to get burned at some point.
In addition, you need to be prepared for wild fluctuations in price over the coming years. There will be times when gold and silver absolutely soar and there will be times when they drop like a rock.
So if you are going to play the game you need to be able to handle the ride.
#4 Should I Get Out Of Debt?
Many that write about the coming economic collapse say that you shouldn’t even bother to pay off your debts because the financial system is going to collapse anyway.
I don’t see it that way.
I don’t believe that our banks are going to totally collapse and suddenly go out of existence.
Not in the short-term anyway.
So I believe that it is actually a good idea to get out of debt. When financial troubles hit you don’t want a horde of bill collectors coming after you.
There is a lot of freedom that comes with getting out of debt, and in this environment it is wise to become as independent of the system as possible.
#5 What If I Don’t Have Any Money To Prepare?
In this kind of economic environment it is no surprise that I get this question a lot.
Many families are just barely scraping by each month and they do not have much money to put into anything.
And I can definitely sympathize with that.
However, I would say that there are very, very few families out there that do not have anything that can be cut out of the budget.
The truth is that American families are experts at blowing money on really stupid stuff.
In general, I recommend that all families do what they can to reduce their expenses.
The smaller of a financial footprint you have, the better off you will be and the more resources you will have to help you get prepared.
Also, now is the time to be looking for ways that you can increase your income.
For many Americans, starting a side business is a way to bring in some extra cash. Yes, this will cut into your television watching time, but now is not the time to be lazy.
The time you spend working hard now while the sun is still shining will pay off later.
Don’t be afraid to work harder than you ever have before.
#6 Should I Rent Or Buy?
This is a question that I also get a lot, and it really depends on your situation.
If you rent, that gives you a lot more flexibility. You can move for a new job or a new opportunity without having to sell a house. And you get to avoid a lot of the expenses and hassles that come with being a homeowner.
If you buy, you get to “lock in” your housing expenses for many years. In a highly inflationary environment this would potentially be very beneficial. And interest rates are very low right now.
In addition, it is going to be really hard to rent a really good “prepper” property. If you are looking for a property that is away from the big cities where you can grow your own food and become more independent of the system, then in most cases you are going to have to buy such a property.
But if you do buy, it is going to be much harder to move if something does happen and you need to go somewhere else.
#7 What About My Health Condition?
Over the next few years, our health care system should continue operating at least somewhat normally. But the truth is that our health care system is in horrible shape and it is not a good thing to be totally dependent on pills and doctors.
Even if economic conditions were perfect it would be a good idea to learn what you can do on your own to improve your health. But this is especially true as we move into a time of great economic instability.
#8 Should I Be Storing Food?
However, even though the United States is experiencing a historic drought right now, I do not believe that there will be major food shortages in America this year or next year.
Down the road, however, is a different story.
And your food dollars are never going to go farther than they do right now. As I wrote about the other day, this drought is likely to cause food prices to go up substantially, and so the food you store now might end up being twice as valuable a few years from now.
In addition, you never know when a major disaster or emergency is going to strike so it is always good to become more independent of the system.
I encourage everyone to learn how to grow a garden. Yes, your space may be limited, but there is actually one family that produces 6000 pounds of produce every year on just 1/10th of an acre right in the middle of Pasadena, California.
If they can do such extraordinary things with their little plot of land, why can’t you try to do what you can with what you have?
#9 Should I Be Storing Water?
It is always good to have some water on hand in case disaster or emergency strikes.
And you should be rotating whatever water you currently have on hand because you don’t want water sitting around indefinitely.
But what is much more important is to make sure that you and your family have access to a source of water that you can depend on if disaster strikes and the grid goes down.
In a previous article I discussed a report put out by the American Trucker Associations entitled “When Trucks Stop, America Stops” that detailed just how incredibly vulnerable our water supply really is….
According to the American Water Works Association, Americans drink more than one billion glasses of tap water per day. For safety and security reasons, most water supply plants maintain a larger inventory of supplies than the typical business. However, the amount of chemical storage varies significantly and is site specific. According to the Chlorine Institute, most water treatment facilities receive chlorine in cylinders (150 pounds and one ton cylinders) that are delivered by motor carriers. On average, trucks deliver purification chemicals to water supply plants every seven to 14 days. Without these chemicals, water cannot be purified and made safe for drinking. Without truck deliveries of purification chemicals, water supply plants will run out of drinkable water in 14 to 28 days. Once the water supply is drained, water will be deemed safe for drinking only when boiled. Lack of clean drinking water will lead to increased gastrointestinal and other illnesses, further taxing an already weakened healthcare system.
So yes, water is definitely something you should be accounting for in your preparations.
#10 Other Than Food And Water What Other Supplies Will I Need?
Anything that you use on a regular basis or that you would use in an emergency situation is something that you should consider storing up.
For example, if you could not buy any more toilet paper from the stores, what would you do?
Basic things like that are often overlooked by many preppers.
In a previous article, I listed dozens of things you may want to consider storing. Preparation is going to look different for every family, but hopefully that list will give you some ideas.
#11 What Happens If The Power Grid Goes Down?
This is a very important consideration – especially if you live in a colder climate.
Some people have a backup generator for such circumstances.
Others have set up wind and/or solar systems for their homes.
Alternative energy solutions are great if you can afford them, and they will enable you to become much more independent of the system.
But not everyone can afford to put in solar panels or a big wind turbine.
So do what you can with what you have.
#12 Should I Leave The Big Cities?
A lot of people ask me this, but there is no easy answer.
In this day and age, a good job is like gold. It can be really, really tough to give up a good job and move to the middle of nowhere.
But without a doubt, society is starting to come apart at the seams and I do expect rioting and major civil unrest in our major cities at some point in the future.
In the end, you need to do what is right for you and your own family. Nobody else can make this decision for you.
#13 Should I Get Some Self-Defense Training?
America seems to be overrun by psychopaths and sociopaths these days, and in such an environment being able to defend yourself becomes more important.
When criminals come to your home, they are not going to sit down and have a debate with you. They are not going to care what your political outlook is or if you sympathize with their plight.
The criminals are simply going to do what they came there to do unless someone stops them.
So yes, some self-defense training may come in very handy in the years ahead.
#14 What Should I Do If My Family And Friends Won’t Listen To Me?
This is another very common question that I get.
What should people do if nobody will listen to them?
Well, you just have to do the best that you can. If they won’t listen now, just keep planting seeds. Keep sending them articles that are packed with statistics and information that show why an economic collapse is going to happen.
In the years ahead we are all going to need our families and our friends because communities will endure what is coming much better than “lone wolf” individuals will be able to.
No matter how hard you prepare, at some point you are going to need the help of someone else.
So don’t be afraid to reach out to others.
If nobody among your family or friends will listen to you at the moment, you may have to prepare on your own right now.
In fact, you may have to do extra preparation because at some point it is probably inevitable that your family and friends will come to you for help.
That is the perspective that my wife and I take. We are not only preparing for ourselves. We are also preparing for the family members that may have to depend on us someday.
Nobody said that preparing was going to be easy.
But beyond any physical preparations, I also believe that it is absolutely crucial to prepare mentally and spiritually.
The times that are coming are going to be incredibly challenging. They are going to require a great deal of physical, mental, emotional and spiritual strength.
If you are a “lone wolf” that believes that you don’t need anyone or anything, then I feel sorry for you and I honestly don’t know how you are going to make it.
None of us have all the answers.
I know that I certainly do not.
I have just written nearly 3000 words, but after I post this article I know that some of the great visitors to my site will post ideas that I never even considered for this article.
We can all learn from each other. Most of the people that I have met that think “they know it all” are some of the most clueless people that I have ever come across.
I never want to stop learning, and hopefully that is the case for you as well.
If we work together, perhaps we can all make it through the horrible, horrible times that are coming.