I have said it before, and I will probably state it thousands of more times before it is all said and done… People suck! Not you or I of course, But a lot of people that we allow to share the same planet and oxygen with us. Every day a new “Johnny-come-lately” shows up on the scene and tells us something that we already know, so that we can more easily relate to them, then they will try to fill your brain with their psychobabble, As you accept and believe, they feel better, they feel powerful. Who cares how you feel or what it does to you? (Listen to “Liar” by Henry Rollins. Talk about the groundwork being laid…)
The latest and greatest “Snake Oil” scheme has everything to do with “PREPPING”, as soon as shows start coming out on the discovery channel, you can just about bet that ship has already sailed. So what do these shows do? Sell product. Period. Why else would otherwise logical people start buying shipping containers and filling them with God-knows what? Am I saying that prepping is wrong, hell no! I base most of my life on the ideals of prepping. But my theories are based of personal experience, and catered to my skill set. If given the opportunity to share my experience and theories with someone who has questions, I will gladly, by no means would I ever tell anyone I am an expert, How can someone ever be an expert in something that has no set parameters for its inception? The industry has banked on the fear of their consumers. I call it “prep-aganda”, they feed people full of extremist ideas, and show them the 1% of hard-core prepping. They make people question why they don’t have a bunker buried with enough food to feed Coxey’s army until the next apocalypse? Why don’t you have 15 crates of Mosin-Nagants, and 2 “spam can’s” of ammo for each of those rifles? Do you have a few extra 55 gallon drums lying around full of fuel that you use and replace in a piecemeal fashion? How big’s your bunker bro? People get so caught up watching how the lunatic fringe conducts business, they become worried, thus creating “prep-paranoia”. Some people (like you and I) can see through the garbage, and sift the good out of it. But to someone who is new to the idea of self-reliance, these shows may not only overwhelm them with their over the top force feed, it may even turn them away all together. Pushing someone to a mindset where they will rely on any one other than themselves in a survival situation is not something I want on my conscience. We as the “informed” need to give reliable information, and be helpful. We all had to start some where, and without help from those that had already learned those lessons, we would all still be in the dark and unprepared. I think one of the biggest things we can do is “de-bunker” some of the prepper myths.
- “We all need to prep now, because (the ozone is depleting, solar flares are coming, EMP’s, zombies, the government is corrupt… You get the picture, pick one insert it after “because”)” Prepping is not a new idea , it even talks about it in the bible: I Timothy 5:8 says. “Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.”, and Proverbs 21:20 states. “In the house of the wise are stores of choice food and oil, but a foolish man devours all he has. “ The term “prepping” is the only thing that is new. We use to call it “being a grown up”, you don’t need a have a pig farm where you harness methane gas to run your stove, or a M35 deuce and a half that runs on canola oil, the basis of the whole thing is the ability to survive with only what you have on hand. Some can survive with less, while others need more. What is truly important is having the ability to understand your potential situations, and being honest enough with yourself to plan accordingly.
- “Buy tons of guns in common calibers, 5.56, .308, 9mm,40 s&w, 45 acp, that way you will be able to scavenge ammo if you find places where people have left. Plus the military/police pick those cartridges because they are the best…) Hell, I will be the first pot to call the kettle black on this one, I sold firearms for a living for pete’s sake. I even sold firearms during the last Obama election and the 2013 ammo shortage, And I sold a lot of guns. I may have learned quite a things also. Lets say you own all 5 calibers I mentioned above, and you are left in a world that has gone to shambles… You happen upon a house and the doors are open, you decide to walk in and look for supplies. What will you find? My bet is nothing! There are 2 reasons why a person would abandon their home, 1: They decide to leave and travel towards some destination. 2: They were looted, and probably worse. Either way you’re not going to find ammunition. If you leave under your own free will and have firearms, you will pack all that ammo with you come hell or high-water. If the house was looted, you can bet that the culprits will take whatever has value, including the ammo. When the ammo shortage set in, it was pretty safe to say that those 5 calibers mentioned above were the first to be sold out (lets not talk about .22 long rifle, that is still a point of contention for me.) 25 different slots for 9mm, and all of them empty. What was on the shelf? .327 Federal Magnum, you know why? Because no one owned one, yet. I ended up selling a few for that reason alone, there were cases of ammo, it was less than a .357 magnum, more than a .38 spl. and you get 6 shots out of a revolver, not 5. The problem really levered on people knowing that there was a shortage, and hoarding like crazy. Common calibers were first to go, but it touched every round the same. Ammunition companies had to shut down some calibers for a period of time to keep up with demands of the popular ones, either way there were a lot less boxes of ammo on the shelf. So what is the answer? For me, it is to buy a caliber that you like to shoot, that you can afford to shoot, that you can find components to reload with , and learn to reload. Look at systems like the Lee loader pistol kit, or rifle kit, they are simple small kits that allow you to reload ammunition in about 30 seconds a round. You won’t be breaking any speed records but you will be able to reload live ammo without having to haul you reloading bench with you. Bullets, powder, primers, a small mallet and a kit that is about the same size as your favorite Jetro Tull 8-track tape.Also take a look at Trail boss powder by hodgdon, it will work in just about everything. Another great option is to buy common calibers that aren’t really in the lime-light. 30-06 is a great one, plenty of ammo options, and every place that sells guns or ammo will have it. Other good options are, 30-30 Win, 7mm Rem. Mag., .300 win Mag, .270 Win., .243 Win… and the list goes on and on.
- “Prepper’s are anti-government, and are all preparing for the collapse of civilization.” Sure, some maybe, I however am not. I do take the stance of liking smaller government, but I thoroughly appreciate our military, and law enforcement officials. They fight to keep our country free, and our family’s safe when we can not do it for ourselves. That is heavy burden, that comes with a lot of responsibility. They deserve much gratitude. And what will cause the collapse of our civilization anyhow? Will the infrastructure just totally collapse, and the whole land will fall into complete disarray and anarchy? Will the Government decide to eradicate the whole population? I refuse to believe either. We, when placed in stressful situations, push forward into a structured society, creating laws, protecting those that need it, and crafting civilization. We did it back in 1776, and we can do it again if be, it’s the American way.
So what is the correct answer? Take care of yourself, take care of your family, perpetuate better living through knowledge, understanding and practice. If the sun burns out, what does it matter if you have 500 gallons of gas? It doesn’t! If the power goes out and the gas pumps don’t work, whats important is to have your vehicle full, and enough spare fuel to last you through the pinch, thats being practical. Practical prepping is what our forefathers did. Living in North Idaho the potential of losing power for 3 days at a time is pretty likely (it happened last year), there for I have enough food, water, dog food, medication, gasoline and cooking fuel to keep my family (including my parents who live a couple of miles down the road) going for at least 72 hours, without experiencing any sort of real discomfort.I have enough ammo to keep me busy for a while, and enough books to keep my wind working, and learning. If we can’t continue to learn, then we are completely lost. When you learn a new trick or skill, practice it until it is perfected, then share it with others that you care about, once they have it perfected, ask them to do the same to those they care about. Share fact, not misguided opinion, be honest and be truthful. Share that truth, and the truth shall set you free.
-Grant Willoughby 01/29/2017-