If Americans will trample one another just to save a few dollars on a television, what will they do when society breaks down and the survival of their families is at stake? Once in a while an event comes along that gives us a peek into what life could be like when the thin veneer of civilization that we all take for granted is stripped away. For example, when Hurricane Sandy hit New York and New Jersey there was rampant looting and within days people were digging around in supermarket dumpsters looking for food. Sadly, “Black Friday” also gives us a look at how crazed the American people can be when given the opportunity. This year was no exception. Once again we saw large crowds of frenzied shoppers push, shove, scratch, claw, bite and trample one another just to save a few bucks on cheap foreign-made goods. And of course most retailers seem to be encouraging this type of behavior. Most of them actually want people frothing at the mouth and willing to fight one another to buy their goods. But is this kind of “me first” mentality really something that we want to foster as a society? If people are willing to riot to save money on a cell phone, what would they be willing to do to feed their families? Are the Black Friday riots a very small preview of the civil unrest that is coming when society eventually breaks down?
Once upon a time, Thanksgiving was not really a commercial holiday. It was a time to get together with family and friends, eat turkey and express thanks for the blessings that we have been given.
But in recent years Black Friday has started to become even a bigger event than Thanksgiving itself.
Millions of Americans have become convinced that it is fun to wait in long lines outside retail stores in freezing cold weather in the middle of the night to spend money that they do not have on things that they do not need.
And of course very, very few “Black Friday deals” are actually made in America. So these frenzied shoppers are actually killing American jobs and destroying the U.S. economy as well.
The absurdity of Black Friday was summed up very well recently in a statement that has already been retweeted on Twitter more than 1,000 times…
“Black Friday: because only in America people trample each other for sales exactly one day after being thankful for what they already have.”
It has gotten to the point where it is now expected that there will be mini-riots all over the country early on Black Friday morning each year. The following are a few examples of the craziness that we saw this year…
Fortunately, many Americans are starting to get fed up with Black Friday. In fact, one activist named Mark Dice actually went out and heckled Black Friday shoppers this year. I found the following You Tube video to be very funny, and I think most of you will too…
In the end, it is not that big of a deal that people want to fight with one another to save 50 dollars on a cell phone.
But this kind of extreme selfishness and desperation could become a massive problem someday if society breaks down and suddenly millions of extremely selfish and desperate people are scrambling for survival.
With each passing day our economy is getting even weaker, and the next wave of the economic collapse is rapidly approaching. What are people going to do when the next spike in unemployment hits us and nobody can find work?
To get an idea of where things are headed, just look at Europe. In both Greece and Spain the unemployment rate is over 25 percent and civil unrest has become almost a constant problem in both of those countries.
So what kind of riots will we see in the United States when the economy gets much worse than it is now?
Already there are signs of social decay all around us, and most Americans are completely unprepared for what will happen if a major disaster or emergency does strike.
Sadly, the reality is that most Americans live on a month to month basis. Most families do not have any emergency savings to speak of, and one recent poll found that 55 percent of all Americans only have enough food in their homes to survive for three days or less.
To me, that is an absolutely insane number.
We just came through a summer of extreme drought and global food supplies have dropped to a 40 year low. Our world is becoming increasingly unstable, and the global financial system could fall apart at any time. Most of us just assume that there will always be huge amounts of very cheap food available to us, but unfortunately that simply is not a safe assumption. The following is from a recent article in the Guardian…
Evan Fraser, author of Empires of Food and a geography lecturer at Guelph University in Ontario, Canada, says: “For six of the last 11 years the world has consumed more food than it has grown. We do not have any buffer and are running down reserves. Our stocks are very low and if we have a dry winter and a poor rice harvest we could see a major food crisis across the board.”
“Even if things do not boil over this year, by next summer we’ll have used up this buffer and consumers in the poorer parts of the world will once again be exposed to the effects of anything that hurts production.”
When I watch my fellow Americans trample one another to get a deal on a television or a video game, it makes me wonder what they would be willing to do if they went to the store someday and all the food was gone.
Desperate people do desperate things, and someday if there was a major economic breakdown in the United States I think the level of desperation in this country would be extremely frightening.
So what do you think? Please feel free to post a comment with your thoughts below…
This is the time of the year when Americans run out to their favorite retail stores and fill up their shopping carts with lots of cheap plastic crap made by workers in foreign countries where it is legal to pay slave labor wages. By doing this, the American people are actively participating in the destruction of the U.S. economy. You see, buying products that are made in America is not just a matter of national pride. It is a matter of national survival. If we do not support American workers, they are going to continue to see their jobs shipped out of the country. If we do not support American businesses, they are going to continue to die off at a staggering rate. Last year, the United States had a trade deficit with the rest of the world of 558 billion dollars. More than half a trillion dollars that could have gone into the pockets of U.S. workers and U.S. businesses went overseas instead. If that money had stayed in the country, taxes would have been paid on that mountain of cash and our local, state and federal government debt problems would not be as severe. As a result of our massive trade imbalance, we have lost tens of thousands of businesses, millions of jobs and trillions of dollars of national wealth. Both major political parties have sold us out on these issues, and we are getting poorer as a nation with each passing day. We desperately need a resurgence of economic patriotism in the United States before it is too late.
Yes, I know that it is very tempting to buy foreign-made products. After all, they are almost always cheaper.
But most people don’t often think about why they are cheaper.
Unfortunately, in the name of “free trade” American workers have been merged into a global labor pool where they have to compete directly for jobs with workers on the other side of the globe that live in countries where it is legal to pay slave labor wages. This makes employing American workers a tremendous liability.
If a company hires you and pays you 10 to 15 dollars an hour with benefits, how is it going to compete with another company that pays workers a dollar an hour with no benefits on the other side of the planet?
Both major political parties are pushing this emerging “one world economic system“, but it is absolutely killing American jobs. We have already seen a mass exodus of jobs and businesses out of this country, and wages for the jobs that remain in the United States are being forced down because there are hordes of unemployed workers that are willing to take just about any decent job they can find.
It has become painfully obvious that our politicians are not going to do anything to help us on these issues, so what we need is a mass awakening among the American people.
We need to educate people that buying things that are made in America is good for the economy and that buying things that are made elsewhere is bad for the economy.
But for now, most Americans are clueless. They will line up on Black Friday morning and trample one another in a desperate attempt to save a few bucks on cheap plastic devices that were made on the other side of the planet.
And they will pay for much of this “shopping” with credit cards.
Credit card debt is on the rise once again. In fact, average credit card debt per borrower was 4.9 percent higher in the third quarter of 2012 than it was in the third quarter of 2011. It looks like most of us didn’t learn our lessons from the last financial crisis.
But not all Americans enjoy the shopping that is typically involved with this time of the year. One recent survey found that approximately 45 percent of all Americans think that there is so much financial pressure associated with the holidays that they wouldn’t mind skipping them completely.
That same poll found that approximately 41 percent of all Americans would only be able to survive for two weeks without a paycheck. Many Americans are up to their eyeballs in debt, their incomes are not keeping up with rising prices, and they find themselves scratching and clawing just to make it from month to month.
Meanwhile, we continue to destroy our own jobs and businesses by spending our money on products that have been made outside the country.
The following are 55 reasons why you should buy products that are made in America this holiday season…
1. When you buy products that are made in America you support American workers.
2. When you buy products that are made in America you support companies that are doing business in America.
7. When NAFTA was passed in 1993, the United States had a trade surplus with Mexico of 1.6 billion dollars. In 2010, we had a trade deficit with Mexico of 61.6 billion dollars.
8. One professor has estimated that cutting the U.S. trade deficit in half would create 5 million more jobs in the United States.
9. Overall, the United States has run a trade deficit of more than 8 trillion dollars with the rest of the globe since 1975. That 8 trillion dollars could have gone to support U.S. businesses and pay the wages of U.S. workers. Federal, state and local taxes would also have been paid on that 8 trillion dollars if it had stayed in the United States.
10. According to the Economic Policy Institute, America is losing half a million jobs to China every single year.
11. The United States has lost an average of approximately 50,000 manufacturing jobs a month since China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001.
16. Between December 2000 and December 2010, 38 percent of the manufacturing jobs in Ohio were lost, 42 percent of the manufacturing jobs in North Carolina were lost and 48 percent of the manufacturing jobs in Michigan were lost.
17. As I have written about previously, 95 percent of the jobs lost during the last recession were middle class jobs.
18. Due in part to the globalization of the labor pool, only about 24 percent of all jobs in the United States are “good jobs” at this point.
20. The United States now has 10 percent fewer “middle class jobs” than it did just ten years ago.
21. According to the Economic Policy Institute, the U.S. economy loses approximately 9,000 jobs for every $1 billion of goods that are imported from overseas.
22. As our economic infrastructure is gutted, formerly great manufacturing cities all over America are being transformed into festering hellholes.
23. Between 2001 and 2007, the value of products that Wal-Mart imported from China grew from $9 billion to $27 billion.
24. In 2001, American consumers spent 102 billion dollars on products made in China. In 2011, American consumers spent 399 billion dollars on products made in China.
25. The United States spends about 4 dollars on goods and services from China for every one dollar that China spends on goods and services from the United States.
26. Back in 1998, the United States had 25 percent of the world’s high-tech export market and China had just 10 percent. Today, China’s high-tech exports are more than twice the size of U.S. high-tech exports.
27. In 2002, the United States had a trade deficit in “advanced technology products” of $16 billion with the rest of the world. In 2010, that number skyrocketed to $82 billion.
28. The United States has lost more than a quarter of all of its high-tech manufacturing jobs over the past ten years.
29. Manufacturing employment in the U.S. computer industry was actually lower in 2010 than it was in 1975.
30. The Chinese undervalue their currency by about 40 percent in order to gain a critical advantage over foreign competitors. This means that many Chinese companies are able to absolutely thrive while their competition in the United States goes out of business.
31. According to the New York Times, a Jeep Grand Cherokee that costs $27,490 in the United States costs about $85,000 in China thanks to all the tariffs.
33. Since the auto industry bailout, approximately 70 percent of all GM vehicles have been built outside the United States.
34. Do you remember when the United States was the dominant manufacturer of automobiles and trucks on the globe? Well, in 2010 the U.S. ran a trade deficit in automobiles, trucks and parts of $110 billion.
35. In 2010, South Korea exported 12 times as many automobiles, trucks and parts to us as we exported to them.
36. In 2010, China produced 627 million metric tons of steel. The United States only produced 80 million metric tons of steel.
37. In 2010, China produced 7.3 million metric tons of cotton. The United States only produced 3.4 million metric tons of cotton.
41. China is now the number one supplier of components that are critical to the operation of U.S. defense systems. How stupid can we possibly be?
42. According to author Clyde Prestowitz, China’s number one export to the U.S. is computer equipment. According to an article in U.S. News & World Report, during 2010 the number one U.S. export to China was “scrap and trash”.
43. All over the United States, road and bridge projects are being outsourced to Chinese firms. Just check out the following excerpt from a recent ABC News article….
In New York there is a $400 million renovation project on the Alexander Hamilton Bridge.
In California, there is a $7.2 billion project to rebuild the Bay Bridge connecting San Francisco and Oakland.
In Alaska, there is a proposal for a $190 million bridge project.
These projects sound like steps in the right direction, but much of the work is going to Chinese government-owned firms.
“When we subsidize jobs in China, we’re not creating any wealth in the United States,” said Scott Paul, executive director for the Alliance for American Manufacturing.
49. In recent years the U.S. economy has embraced “free trade” and the emerging one world economy like never before. Instead of increasing the number of jobs in our economy, it has resulted in the worst stretch of job creation in the United States in modern history….
If any single number captures the state of the American economy over the last decade, it is zero. That was the net gain in jobs between 1999 and 2009—nada, nil, zip. By painful contrast, from the 1940s through the 1990s, recessions came and went, but no decade ended without at least a 20 percent increase in the number of jobs.
51. China now holds approximately more than a trillion dollars of U.S. government debt. If you were alive back when Jesus was born and you had spent a million dollars every single day since then, you still would not have spent that much money by now.
53. Without enough good jobs, more Americans than ever before are falling into poverty. Today, more than 100 million Americans are enrolled in at least one welfare program run by the federal government.
54. According to Professor Alan Blinder of Princeton University, 40 million more U.S. jobs could be sent offshore over the next two decades if current trends continue.
55. If U.S. consumers do not start supporting U.S. workers and U.S. businesses, eventually we will all be so poor that very few of us will be able to afford to buy any gifts during the holiday season.
All over America, there are millions of Americans that are quietly preparing for doomsday. They are turning spare rooms into long-term food storage pantries, they are planting survival gardens, they are converting their homes over to alternative sources of energy, they are taking self-defense courses and they are stocking up on just about anything you can imagine. They are called “preppers”, and their numbers have absolutely exploded in recent years. In fact, you might be living next door to one and never even realize it. According to a recent Daily Mail article, there are approximately 3 million preppers in the United States today. Others believe that the true number is significantly higher than that. This movement has become so popular that there are now even television shows being done about preppers. The most popular is probably “Doomsday Preppers” on the National Geographic Channel. This movement is still growing and is not going to go away any time soon. In fact, as the world continues to become even more unstable it is likely that a lot more Americans will find themselves becoming preppers in the years ahead.
So what exactly are all these people so concerned about? Exactly why are there millions of Americans that are feverishly preparing for doomsday?
Well, the truth is that you will never find two preppers that are exactly alike. Some are deeply concerned about the potential for natural disasters and believe that we are now entering into a time when there will be catastrophic earth changes. Other preppers believe that terrorism is the most significant threat to our way of life. Killer pandemics, an EMP attack, World War III, martial law, solar megastorms, asteroid strikes and societal chaos are some of the other things that some preppers are worried about.
Of course an economic collapse is one of the biggest concerns for preppers, and without a doubt the U.S. economy is deeply troubled. A collapse of the financial system would change all of our lives permanently.
But it isn’t just preppers that are concerned about these things.
A recent survey conducted by National Geographic asked Americans the following question….
“Which of the following, if any, do you think might happen in the United States in the next 25 years? Please choose all that apply.”
These were the results….
Significant Earthquake 64%
Significant Hurricane 63%
Terrorist Attack 55%
Financial Collapse 51%
Significant Blackout 37%
Pandemic, Such as From a Super-Virus 29%
Nuclear Fallout 14%
None of These 13%
Obviously there are a whole lot of people out there that feel as though we are heading for some really bad stuff.
So if hard times are coming, why not prepare for them?
After all, none of us want to end up like the poor people of New Orleans in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Large numbers of people were herded into the Superdome and food and water ran out really fast. There was rampant looting of stores and people were shooting each other in the streets. It was mass chaos.
Last night was horrendous. I heard shouting, and drinks machines being smashed. There’s no sanitation and it’s so smelly. My hair is greasy and I feel a wreck. There are crack alleys among the maze of corridors. The lights are broken in the loos which, as well as being disgusting, have become dangerous, so we now only go as a big group.
More people are arriving, and the dome is like a refugee camp. I see two soldiers carrying a corpse and we hear there are more dead in the basement.
As an article in the New York Times from that time period detailed, food and water were in very short supply and those cramped into the Superdome were rapidly becoming impatient….
Desperation was in the air. Danielle Shelby tugged at a reporter’s arm. “I have a handicapped daughter,” she said. “She’s over there with her wheelchair. She’s hot. We don’t have any water. I’m afraid she’s going to have a seizure.”
Others crowded around. “I’ve been in the food line twice, and every time I get to the front they tell me they don’t have any left,” said Juanita McFerrin, 80.
Later on in that same article, we are told that there were fights, rapes and at least one suicide in the Superdome during that time….
It got worse. Ms. Rousell recalled hearing a loud bang Tuesday afternoon as the body of a man slapped the concrete at the edge of the football field in a fatal suicidal plunge, after he apparently learned that his home had been destroyed. Others told of fights that broke out in food lines, and of a husband and wife who slugged each other in a wild argument.
Several residents said they had heard of children being raped, though it was not clear whether anyone reported such incidents to the authorities, and no officials could be found who could confirm the accounts.
To get an even better idea of what life in New Orleans was like in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, just check out this video.
Within just a few days food, water and supplies started pouring into New Orleans and things started slowly getting back to normal, but imagine what things would look like in this country if we had to deal with a national disaster that stretched on for months or even years?
Many preppers are not taking any chances. Many are absolutely determined to be able to take care of their families and friends no matter what the years ahead may bring.
Tim Ralston, a married father of two from Arizona, is one such “prepper.”
“There’s a lot of different things that could happen,” Ralston said. “For me, I look at prepping as kind of like insurance. You have car insurance, health insurance, life insurance.”
Call it Apocalypse insurance. Ralston turned his family’s two-car garage into a staging area. Inside is a trailer, which he keeps packed and ready to go at all times, stockpiles of freeze-dried food, including cartons of canned chicken with a shelf life of 15 years, survival gear, such as a system for purifying polluted water, first aid kits and lots of weapons and ammunition. His son has his own AK-47.
Some preppers are going to the extreme and are spending huge amounts of money on their prepping.
CNN recently profiled one Australian prepper that has spent about $350,000 preparing for doomsday….
Bast has spent about $5,000 on stockpiles of food and water, and $11,000 on equipment including gas cookers, generators, batteries, water purifiers and solar power. He also purchased roughly an acre of land that’s a 75-minute drive from Melbourne and 1,500 feet above sea level (in order to stay high and dry in case of a flood or tsunami). He has built a house there, as well as a bunker to serve as his “safe spot” in the event of an emergency. Together, the land, buildings and bunker have cost him a total of about $330,000.
He’s also spent $10,000 on an 8-year old Toyota HiLux pickup truck to drive to his safe spot.
But the truth is that prepping does not have to be expensive.
The key is to start by focusing on the five basics….
There are some practical things that just about anyone can do even if you don’t have a lot of money.
For example, when you go to the store try to pick up a few extra items that are on sale and add them to your supplies. If you rotate your food supplies, they won’t go bad.
In addition, just about anyone can plant a garden. Often fruits and vegetables are some of the most expensive items at the grocery store, and so growing a garden can end up saving you a lot of money.
Get educated. There are dozens of prepper websites out there where you can get an education in prepping for free. The following are a few examples of some of the excellent prepper websites that are out there today….
The truth is that our world is becoming increasingly unstable in a whole bunch of different ways and we all need to learn how to prepare for the difficult years ahead.
As the economy continues to fall apart, America is going to become a very heartless place. You don’t want to be caught in the middle of societal chaos without a plan.
None of us should be relying on the government to save us when things hit the fan. We all saw what happened after Hurricane Katrina. Those that were depending on the government were deeply disappointed.
We should all try to become as independent of the system as we can, because the system is failing. In the years ahead there might not be anybody to help you and your family, so you need to be working hard right now to ensure that you and your family will be taken care of.
Yes, as you may have guessed by now, I am a prepper too. My wife and I moved to an entirely different state and totally changed our lifestyle to prepare for what is coming.
Hopefully this article will inspire many more Americans to prepare for what is coming. A great economic collapse is on the horizon and time is rapidly running out.
Do you ever get the feeling that the middle class in America is shrinking? Well, you are not imagining things. A confluence of very troubling long-term economic trends has created an environment in which the middle class in America is being absolutely shredded. Today, most American families would be absolutely thrilled if they could live as well as past generations did. The dream of receiving a solid education, getting a good job, owning a beautiful home and enjoying the good things that America has to offer is increasingly becoming out of reach for a growing number of Americans. The reality is that even though our population has grown, there are less jobs than there used to be. A much higher percentage of the jobs that remain are low income jobs. Millions of middle class American families are desperately trying to hang on as inflation far outpaces the growth of their paychecks. Millions of others have fallen completely out of the middle class and are now totally dependent on the government for survival. We once had the largest, most vibrant middle class in the history of the world, but now way too much unemployment, way too much inflation, way too much greed and way too much debt are all starting to catch up with us. America is changing, and not for the better.
When most of us were growing up, we understood that there was an unspoken promise that if we got good grades, stayed out of trouble, worked really hard and did everything we were told to do, the system would reward us.
Well, today there are millions of Americans that have done all of those things but don’t have anything to show for it.
As large numbers of hard working people continue to fall out of the middle class, there is a growing sense that “the system” has betrayed us all.
Sadly, the truth is that the U.S. economy is dying. The endless prosperity that we all enjoyed in the past is gone and it is never going to come back.
The following are 34 pieces of evidence that prove that the middle class in America is rapidly shrinking….
#1 In 1980, 52 percent of all jobs in the United States were middle income jobs. Today, only 42 percent of all jobs are middle income jobs.
#2 Back in 1980, less than 30% of all jobs in the United States were low income jobs. Today, more than 40% of all jobs in the United States are low income jobs.
#3 Only 63.5 percent of all men in the United States had a job last month. According to Bloomberg, that figure is “just slightly above the December 2009 nadir of 63.3%. These are the lowest numbers since 1948.”
#4 In 1969, 95 percent of all men between the ages of 25 and 54 had a job. Last month, only 81.2 percent of men in that age group had a job.
#5 According to one recent survey, 64 percent of Americans would be forced to borrow money if they had an unexpected expense of $1000.
#6 The wealthiest 1% of all Americans now control 40 percent of all the wealth in this country.
#7 The poorest 50% of all Americans now control just 2.5% of all the wealth in this country.
#8 The wealthiest 1% of all Americans now own over 50% of all the stocks and bonds.
#9 According to the Washington Post, the average yearly income of the bottom 90 percent of all U.S. income earners is just $31,244.
#16 There are fewer payroll jobs in the United States today than there were back in 2000 even though we have added 30 million people to the population since then.
#17 Since the year 2000, we have lost approximately 10% of our middle class jobs. In the year 2000 there were about 72 million middle class jobs in the United States but today there are only about 65 million middle class jobs.
#18 The competition for even the most basic jobs has become absolutely brutal. Approximately 7 percent of all those that apply to get into Harvard are accepted. At a recent “National Hiring Day” held by McDonald’s only about 6.2 percent of the one million Americans that applied for a job were hired.
#19 It now takes the average unemployed worker in America about 40 weeks to find a new job.
#20 According to a report released in February from the National Employment Law Project, higher wage industries are accounting for 40 percent of the job losses in America but only 14 percent of the job growth. Lower wage industries are accounting for just 23 percent of the job losses but 49 percent of the job growth.
#21 Half of all American workers now earn $505 or less per week.
#22 The cost of college tuition in the United States has gone up by over 900 percent since 1978.
As the middle class continues to shrivel up and die, the number of desperate people is going to continue to grow.
In the past, I have written extensively about how many Americans are already becoming so desperate that they will do just about anything for money.
Well, here are a couple more examples….
One unemployed man down in the Phoenix area that had reportedly robbed 12 banks told police the following about why he did it….
“I rob to survive.”
As millions more Americans fall into poverty, we are going to see a lot more crime.
Most of these people are not going to commit crimes because they enjoy them. Rather, they will be doing what they feel they need to do in order to survive.
Not all of the shady activity will be so violent. Desperation comes out in different ways. For example, there are now actually websites where women advertise their “services” to potential “sugar daddies” that will help them with college expenses or support them financially.
Hopefully those reading this article will never resort to those kinds of things.
Yes, things are going to be tough, but there are always good alternatives if you are willing to look hard enough for them.
If you really need a job right now, pay close attention to the next couple of points. Good jobs are very hard to come by in most areas at the moment, so you may have to be willing to make some sacrifices if you are desperate.
Today, millions of Americans say that they believe that the United States is on the verge of a major economic collapse and will soon be entering another Great Depression. But only a small percentage of those same people are prepared for that to happen. The sad truth is that the vast majority of Americans would last little more than a month on what they have stored up in their homes. Most of us are so used to running out to the supermarket or to Wal-Mart for whatever we need that we never even stop to consider what would happen if suddenly we were not able to do that. Already the U.S. economy is starting to stumble about like a drunken frat boy. All it would take for the entire U.S. to resemble New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina would be for a major war, a terror attack, a deadly pandemic or a massive natural disaster to strike at just the right time and push the teetering U.S. economy over the edge. So just how would you survive if you suddenly could not rely on the huge international corporate giants to feed, clothe and supply you and your family? Do you have a plan?
Unless you already live in a cave or you are a complete and total mindless follower of the establishment media, you should be able to see very clearly that our society is more vulnerable now than it ever has been. This year there have been an unprecedented number of large earthquakes around the world and volcanoes all over the globe are awakening. You can just take a look at what has happened in Haiti and in Iceland to see how devastating a natural disaster can be. Not only that, but we have a world that is full of lunatics in positions of power, and if one of them decides to set off a nuclear, chemical or biological weapon in a major city it could paralyze an entire region. War could erupt in the Middle East at literally any moment, and if it does the price of oil will double or triple (at least) and there is the possibility that much of the entire world could be drawn into the conflict. Scientists tell us that a massive high-altitude EMP (electromagnetic pulse) blast could send large portions of the United States back to the stone age in an instant. In addition, there is the constant threat that the outbreak of a major viral pandemic (such as what happened with the 1918 Spanish Flu) could kill tens of millions of people around the globe and paralyze the economies of the world.
But even without all of that, the truth is that the U.S. economy is going to collapse. So just think of what will happen if one (or more) of those things does happen on top of all the economic problems that we are having.
Are you prepared?
The following is a list of 20 things you and your family will need to survive when the economy totally collapses and the next Great Depression begins….
#1) Storable Food
Food is going to instantly become one of the most valuable commodities in existence in the event of an economic collapse. If you do not have food you are not going to survive. Most American families could not last much longer than a month on what they have in their house right now. So what about you? If disaster struck right now, how long could you survive on what you have? The truth is that we all need to start storing up food. If you and your family run out of food, you will suddenly find yourselves competing with the hordes of hungry people who are looting the stores and roaming the streets looking for something to eat.
Of course you can grow your own food, but that is going to take time. So you need to have enough food stored up until the food that you plant has time to grow. But if you have not stored up any seeds you might as well forget it. When the economy totally collapses, the remaining seeds will disappear very quickly. So if you think that you are going to need seeds, now is the time to get them.
#2) Clean Water
Most people can survive for a number of weeks without food, but without water you will die in just a few days. So where would you get water if the water suddenly stopped flowing out of your taps? Do you have a plan? Is there an abundant supply of clean water near your home? Would you be able to boil water if you need to?
Besides storing water and figuring out how you are going to gather water if society breaks down, another thing to consider is water purification tablets. The water you are able to gather during a time of crisis may not be suitable for drinking. So you may find that water purification tablets come in very, very handy.
You can’t sleep on the streets, can you? Well, some people will be able to get by living on the streets, but the vast majority of us will need some form of shelter to survive for long. So what would you do if you and your family lost your home or suddenly were forced from your home? Where would you go?
The best thing to do is to come up with several plans. Do you have relatives that you can bunk with in case of emergency? Do you own a tent and sleeping bags if you had to rough it? If one day everything hits the fan and you and your family have to “bug out” somewhere, where would that be? You need to have a plan.
#4) Warm Clothing
If you plan to survive for long in a nightmare economic situation, you are probably going to need some warm, functional clothing. If you live in a cold climate, this is going to mean storing up plenty of blankets and cold weather clothes. If you live in an area where it rains a lot, you will need to be sure to store up some rain gear. If you think you may have to survive outdoors in an emergency situation, make sure that you and your family have something warm to put on your heads. Someday after the economy has collapsed and people are scrambling to survive, a lot of folks are going to end up freezing to death. In fact, in the coldest areas it is actually possible to freeze to death in your own home. Don’t let that happen to you.
#5) An Axe
Staying along the theme of staying warm, you may want to consider investing in a good axe. In the event of a major emergency, gathering firewood will be a priority. Without a good tool to cut the wood with that will be much more difficult.
#6) Lighters Or Matches
You will also want something to start a fire with. If you can start a fire, you can cook food, you can boil water and you can stay warm. So in a true emergency situation, how do you plan to start a fire? By rubbing sticks together? Now is the time to put away a supply of lighters or matches so that you will be prepared when you really need them.
In addition, you may want to consider storing up a good supply of candles. Candles come in quite handy whenever the electricity goes out, and in the event of a long-term economic nightmare we will all see why our forefathers relied on candles so much.
#7) Hiking Boots Or Comfortable Shoes
When you ask most people to list things necessary for survival, this is not the first or the second thing that comes to mind. But having hiking boots or very comfortable and functional shoes will be absolutely critical. You may very well find yourself in a situation where you and your family must walk everywhere you want to go. So how far do you think you will get in high heels? You will want footwear that you would feel comfortable walking in for hours if necessary. You will also want footwear that will last a long time, because when the economy truly collapses you may not be able to run out to the shoe store and get what you need at that point.
#8) A Flashlight And/Or Lantern
When the power goes off in your home, what is the first thing that you grab? Just think about it. A flashlight or a lantern of course. In a major emergency, a flashlight or a lantern is going to be a necessity – especially if you need to go anywhere at night.
Solar powered or “crank style” flashlights or lanterns will probably be best during a long-term emergency. If you have battery-powered units you will want to begin storing up lots and lots of batteries.
#9) A Radio
If a major crisis does hit the United States, what will you and your family want? Among other things, you will all want to know what in the world is going on. A radio can be an invaluable tool for keeping up with the news.
Once again, solar powered or “crank style” radios will probably work best for the long term. A battery-powered until would work as well – but only for as long as your batteries are able to last.
#10) Communication Equipment
When things really hit the fan you are going to want to communicate with your family and friends. You will also want to be able to contact an ambulance or law enforcement if necessary. Having an emergency cell phone is great, but it may or may not work during a time of crisis. The Internet also may or may not be available. Be sure to have a plan (whether it be high-tech or low-tech) for staying in communication with others during a major emergency.
#11) A Swiss Army Knife
If you have ever owned a Swiss Army knife you probably already know how incredibly handy they can be. It can be a very valuable and versatile tool. In a true survival situation, a Swiss Army knife can literally do dozens of different things for you. Make sure that you have at least one stored up for emergencies.
#12) Personal Hygiene Items
While these may not be absolute “essentials”, the truth is that life will get very unpleasant very quickly without them. For example, what would you do without toilet paper? Just think about it. Imagine that you just finished your last roll of toilet paper and now you can’t get any more. What would you do?
The truth is that soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste, shampoo, toilet paper and other hygiene products are things that we completely take for granted in society today. So what would happen if we could not go out and buy them any longer?
#13) A First Aid Kit And Other Medical Supplies
One a more serious note, you may not be able to access a hospital or a doctor during a major crisis. In your survival supplies, be absolutely certain that you have a good first aid kit and any other medical supplies that you think you may need.
#14) Extra Gasoline
There may come a day when gasoline is rationed or is simply not available at all. If that happens, how will you get around? Be certain to have some extra gasoline stored away just in case you find yourself really needing to get somewhere someday.
#15) A Sewing Kit
If you were not able to run out and buy new clothes for you and your family, what would you do? Well, you would want to repair the clothes that you have and make them last as long as possible. Without a good sewing kit that will be very difficult to do.
#16) Self-Defense Equipment
Whether it is pepper spray to fend off wild animals or something more “robust” to fend off wild humans, millions of Americans will one day be thankful that they have something to defend themselves with.
#17) A Compass
In the event of a major emergency, you and your family may find yourselves having to be on the move. If you are in a wilderness area, it will be very hard to tell what direction you are heading without a compass. It is always a good idea to have at least one compass stored up.
#18) A Hiking Backpack
If you and your family suddenly have to “bug out”, what will you carry all of your survival supplies in? Having a good hiking backpack or “survival bag” for everyone in your family is extremely important. If something happened in the city where you live and you suddenly had to “go”, what would you put your most important stuff in? How would you carry it all if you had to travel by foot? These are very important things to think about.
#19) A Community
During a long-term crisis, it is those who are willing to work together that will have the best chance of making it. Whether it is your family, your friends, a church or a local group of people that you know, make sure that you have some people that you can rely on and work together with in the event that everything hits the fan. Loners are going to have a really hard time of surviving for long.
#20) A Backup Plan
Lastly, it is always, always, always important to have a backup plan for everything.
If someone comes in and steals all the food that you have stored up, what are you going to do?
If travel is restricted and your can’t get to your “bug out” location immediately do you have a Plan B?
If you have built your house into an impregnable survival fortress but circumstances force you to leave do you have an alternate plan?
The truth is that crisis situations rarely unfold just as we envision. It is important to be flexible and to be ready with backup plans when disaster strikes.
You don’t want to end up like the folks in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. You don’t want to have to rely on the government to take care of you if something really bad happens.
Right now the U.S. strategic grain reserve contains only enough wheat to make half a loaf of bread for each of the approximately 300 million people in the United States.
How long do you think that is going to last?
Now is the time to get ready.
Now is the time to prepare.
The United States economy is going to collapse and incredibly hard times are coming.