Tag Archives: knowledge

Unplug!

As the rain pitter-patter’s on the steel roof of my humble abode, I sit here quietly wishing that it was 12 degrees colder outside… I know what you are thinking, and no I’m not going to do chapter 2 of “Can you feel the nip in the air?” even though it would be a great idea. More so this blog is to be one centered around something that is quite contradictory. Y’all need to unplug.

We all know that I am the master of contradiction, I wrote about how great AR-15’s were when I didn’t even own one (even though I had shot PLENTY, and sold literally hundred’s of them), then when I finally pull the trigger and purchase one, I haven’t written anything about them since… I write about the benefits of carrying a sidearm as the centralized part of your EDC kit, then someone see’s me out in public armed with only a knife for personal protection. What sacrilege… Am I a hypocrite? I sure don’t think so, I prefer to take Kris’s stand point of accepting the challenge of bringing a knife to a gunfight every once in a while. I don’t feel that you come to our Post World Patriot page to hear us chatter nothing but tacticool jargon all the time. If that is what you’re looking for, there are plenty of web pages that do just that. Hopefully none of the other members of PWP will take an exception to the fact that I am speaking for them, but I feel the need to. We are not the stereotypical firearm/ survival/ tactical website. We don’t take the position of being elitists when it comes to everything that we do, You can call it whatever you want, but I call it a breath of fresh air in an industry that has become stale in topic. ” I only use a thumb forward modified C-grip while shooting my Gen III Noveske N6 Switchblock, I refuse to place my cheek upon anything that wasn’t made in Grants Pass, Oregon by John Noveske” Blah, Blah, Blah, nobody cares! Ok, I take that back, obviously someone does or else those pages wouldn’t exist (or be so popular). That just isn’t us. Sure we could just regurgitate info that we read in the coolest gun magazines, but if you wanted that info you would probably just buy that magazine. At least if you read the article you’re getting the information from the person that actually did the testing. There are lots of “Google degree” graduates out there, I’m just not one of them. Sure I will read up on a thing or two in pursuit of knowledge and understanding, but until I have busted my knuckle on “that” difficult bolt, or until I have personally shot that “particular” rifle, with that “particular” optic, I don’t feel I should be the one who stands at the altar and passes judgement on it. If you don’t experience these things yourself, than you really don’t know, your just taking someone elses word for it. There is only one way to truly gain that knowledge (Let the contradictions begin)… Turn the computer and phone off, and step out into the world and experience them! Yes I know that you read this on some sort of internet enabled device, and by all means keep visiting our page and reading our blogs, but on the flip side of that coin start doing some intimate research on your own. It amazes me that 6-year-old children know every function on an Iphone, but don’t know how to tie a fisherman’s knot. The ability to have patience and actually wait for something is nonexistent, and doing things the “old” or “traditional” way is being forgotten before we ever have a chance to teach it. It’s not just the wee-lads in elementary schools either, I work with guys in there 20’s who have never written a check for God’s sake! Everything has always been electronic for them, electronic payments and electric deposits… Instant oatmeal and instant messenger… Do you remember the last time that you hand wrote a letter and mailed it old school,  like with a stamp and the whole nine yards? People still do it I promise you. Remember when you listened to the radio and sometimes waited all day to hear that new song that you like? Not now, you can instantly listen to that song all 3 times that it takes for you to grow tired of it, all from your phone. Some of these guys have never bought a CD… I use to buy cassette tapes man, you put it in and had to listen to the whole thing or become a fast finger clairvoyant in order to guess just how much fast forward or rewind you needed in order to hear your favorite Skidrow song twice in a row.  The struggle was real!

What we write about are the things that we have experienced in our lives, and with experience comes knowledge. I have learned a lot while having a 6-year-old Son around the house. On any given day I need to be proficient in all forms of toy repair, I may be called upon to proform most basic medical procedures, all while being a caring father and still being able to identify the telltale signs that he is spending way to much time in front of the television or on his tablet. You cannot be scared to tell those you care about to get off their damn phone. “But they get bored”, do something about it, get them up and out of the boredom. Try this experiment: Take one day out of the weekend, unplug your TV, turn the data off on all the phones, cook an honest homemade breakfast (lately we have been doing some great fruit and oatmeal variations that have become favorites. No instant oats allowed!) After breakfast, pick a project that can be proformed around the house in a timely manner (if tools are involved most kids will instantly want to help) and when the work is done… Go have some fun! Kick it old school, load up the fam and take a ride into the woods lookin for critters, or grab a dozen night crawlers and head out to the lake. Build a snowhill, or jump in that pile of leaves that you worked so hard to rake up. Drink hot cocoa (with marshmellows). Take time and enjoy all of the moments.  you will be amazed at how quickly your day has passed and how much fulfilment you got from it. Days like this have amazing rejuvinating abilities, Its funny how sometimes the only way to recharge your batteries is to completely unplug from the system.

-Grant Willoughby 10/14/2017-

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Opposites Attract…

I haven’t had a chance to write a blog in a bit, because there simply wasn’t enough hours in the weekend to do everything that I had to do, and write a blog too. For those that don’t know, my wife and I are expecting our second child (just found out it will be another BOY). With all the excitement, also comes a lot of preparation. It just so happens that the next challenge we had to check off our list was to get a different vehicle for the wife. Pretty cut and dry huh? This is where the adventure (and revelation) started for me…

First of all I hate debt, so the idea of spending ten’s of thousands of dollars on something that gets you from point “A” to point “B”, is pretty tough for me. Even more so the fact that you are making payments on something that will be worn out by the time you pay it off seems absurd. Secondly, I’m a very no frills kind of guy, so newer vehicles are super foreign to me. It looks as though almost nothing can be simple any more. My wife previously had a Jeep Grand Cherokee, which was a pretty nice rig, (for her) leather seats, power everything, aftermarket everything… To me it seemed pretty loaded, until I  stepped into the first van (yes I said van) that was on the wifes radar… HOLY CRAP MAN, vans are not just for tree planters, people who live in Utah and have lots of children, or that dude that use to give me free candy as a child anymore. The things are more technically advanced then the friggen Bat-mobile! Backup cameras, power sliding doors, electric start, not one, but two DVD players, power inverters, AV inputs all over the place, mood lighting in the roof panels, the middle seats even spin around and there is a table that mounts into the floor so a family of five can sit in the back and have a meal together. Way to fancy for me, but it got me thinking about people in general, and how every person has their own idea system of what should be considered normal… Case and Point: My wife and I. You all have read where I have made reference to how different we are, but this damn van hunt (see how I had to tie it back to hunting to make myself feel better about the whole thing.) really made me think about how dis-similar that we truly are.

FOOD: My wife is a vegetarian, (ancient Indian word for shitty hunter) doesn’t like “real” meat, has fish on occasion. She married a man who will make three meat nachos, using jerky instead of chips. Her Idea of a perfect meal is some sort of black bean and cheese enchilada thing with a strain of rice that the Dalai llama himself discovered. Mine would be a hamburger made of ground prime rib, that uses moose back straps instead of buns (cooked rare of course) with a peppered blue cheese, for a side dish I would like bacon wrapped jo-jo’s, and boneless buffalo grouse wings. I literally spend hundreds of dollars each year in the pursuit of all things finned, furred and feathered, and I’m married to a women who upon seeing a deer first says “AWWWWWWW”, then quickly transitions to “Run Bambi Run”.  (I guess I can’t complain, it gives me an opportunity to practice my Doe bleat and see if I can stop a critter at full gallop right?) But whats important is that she doesn’t try to keep me out of the woods, and I don’t try (too hard) to get her to eat meat, that is the working balance that we have come up with, and it has worked pretty well.

LIFESTYLE: If you have spent time around me and my clan, you know that my wife does not leave the house without looking like she is ready to go to the biggest party of her life. Her make-up is always done, her hair is always perfect, she smells nice, she is beautiful. Which is crazy to me because she married the exact opposite of her. I can be out of bed and into the truck in less than 10 minutes,  I buzz my hair because I don’t like to waste time fixing it when I can just put a hat on. I grow a beard  because I hate to shave (as a plus, it makes me ruggedly handsome, like if a lumberjack and a viking had a baby), and as for fashion I don’t really care much, I try to dress in a way as to not embarrass her, and that serves my purpose, If a pair of shorts will carry my pistol, my multi-tool, a can, my keys, a knife and my wallet, while at the same time covering my unsavory parts I deem them to be perfectly fine to wear just about any place. While were talking about lifestyle let’s  just go down the list of differences: My wife has a smart phone (probably just like you ) that can do just about anything in the world email, text, watch videos of kids falling on bikes,  read Post World Patriot blogs, buy a custom ar-15 in .223 Wylde from Shogun munitions systems, or even order a copy of “hunt with the Sun at your back” from Amazon and leave us an awesome review for it… I have a ruggedized flip phone that has a compass that will work even when I don’t have cell phone service… And its camo. My Idea of lining up for a good shot is finding a good solid rest, insulating the forearm of the rifle from any hard surfaces, making sure that I focus on a clean trigger squeeze and my shooting breath. Her Idea has something to do with getting the whole family into the view finder in selfie mode. We bought the van mentioned above, so you already know its bells and whistles, but I drive a 1993 Ford F-350 crew cab, no power windows or locks, currently it has a power motor, a power stereo, and a power heater, that’s it! It is exactly what I wanted. But it wouldn’t be right for me to expect my wife to have those same requirements to justify her happiness, or vise versa.

People are different. When you think about it, even your closest friends don’t share the exact same thought processes that you do, And how can you expect them to? Yes I may wish that everyone else was the same kind of weird as me, but I know in all reality I would end up trying to get weirder to overcome the monotony of similarity. Acceptance of individual want and needs is very important, if you click on the news tickers, or flip on the boob-tube you are constantly seeing people rioting and fighting about their beliefs, which to me is the most hypocritical thing that a person can do. If you don’t like the way that someone else thinks, don’t listen to them. Why would you surround yourself with people who have made a choice to stand on the other side of the fence from where you hold to be truth? If someone wants to rally on one side of town about how meat is murder (delicious, delicious murder) and you are a butcher why would you go to that gathering? The only reason I can think of is to start a confrontation, and by doing so, you are  saying that your beliefs are more important than theirs. To me that is wrong. If you really don’t like the anti-meat rally being held, why not start your own rally (on the other side of town) and gather with others who believe as you do, your voice can be heard, and so can the other sides, just in different locations where the chances of altercations are lessened. We as fellow Americans have the right to gather and express our feelings and beliefs (no matter how strange and wrong they may be) in that we have to respect each other and work together in order to keep that liberty, be respectful and kind even when faced with situations that lend themselves well to confrontation. Be bigger then the problem, life your life in a way that perpetuates happiness and growth, not hate and fear. We can all get through this together, and person by person we can restore our faith in humanity. If the beautiful vegetarian women in the minivan, listening to Adele on her Iphone, sipping on a $4 bottled water can find it in her heart to love the redneck Grizzly Adams sitting on his tailgate, drinking a Budweiser, eating deer jerky, listening to Merle Haggard, then why can’t the rest of the world find a way to do the same?

-Grant Willoughby Suptember 3rd 2017-

 

 

I told you big things were in the works…

A couple of months ago I wrote you a blog stating that “big things were in the works”, and sure enough we came through on them. If you didn’t see Kris’s post earlier, Kris and I officially published a book (bet you didn’t see that one coming). It is called “Hunt with the Sun at your back.”, Think of it as a modern interpretation of “The Art of War” by Sun Tzu, that has been reworked and reimagined by the two of us, with the outdoor sportsmen in mind. Pretty fun stuff that will relate to almost anyone who enters the outdoors in  pursuit of wild game, or anyone who has done any amount of research into the martial arts. Even if you are just interested to see what two Idaho boys would do trying to rework a timeless military strategy manual, (Hell look at the picture above, even George Clooney is reading this thing!), this is a great book for you. We are very proud of it, and would like to think that it could find a home on any of your coffee tables. It is officially available for purchase through Amazon.com, and its prime eligible.

I promise that we will have more material coming out soon by way of blog and video, it just takes a bit of time to synchronize four different schedules into one. Tell us what you guys want us to write about, or what videos you would like to see. Just ask a question, and we will fire back with everything we got… “What style of fishing  do you prefer, and in so what is your favorite lure?” I (Grant) choose my lures depending on the time of year, and what species I am targeting. Personally I am more of a top-water guy.  As for right now, were doing more internet fishing, and my favorite lure is by far the “Shameless plug!”  (yep its another link to the book)

Grant Willoughby

 

Time management

A martial arts teacher told me once, “If you want to be good, train when no one else is training…”.  I not being the brightest bulb in the box took this at its most literal translation.  So here I am throwing punches on my way to get a glass of water, kicking down the hall when I go to take a piss, swatting flies with what I hope are lightning fast backfists,  and practicing my footwork while moving around the stockroom(this I am positive gave my supervisor an uneasy feeling about me when he walked in on what I can only assume looked like a schizophrenic believing himself to be attacked by a rabid group of capybara).

The point of this article isn’t to show you how unhinged I am, or that I was even a successful martial artist due to my strange training habits, but I’m sharing this story because that one conversation changed my perspective about skill integration, time management and getting shit done.

Like most people one of my worst enemies is time.  To be specific “I don’t have enough time.”  Time is a formidable foe to be sure, but sadly most of us aren’t even bothering to get in the fight.  You hear us talk about skill sets over assets all the time, but what good are these skills without skill integration, sure you can learn a ton of stuff, but is it worth anything if you can’t exercise that skill under duress?

Around a PWP campfire you might hear such strange conversations as, “I got the fire going”, “yeah, but can you start a fire with a cricket and the lint from your belly button?”  (PLEASE don’t try this… those poor crickets, I can still hear their screams).  All joking aside, this type of banter should get one thinking, did you start that fire with your bic, matches, or gasoline?  If your perspective is tuned to skill integration and your willing to take up the fight against “time” every fire you start you should be practicing(read integrating) the skills you have learned.  If your lighting up the fire pit in the backyard cause your buds are coming over for a beer.  Guess what you have nothing but “time”, your not lost, hypothermic, or otherwise in need of the blessings of fire.  This is where time management comes in.  Build a bow drill, a plow, find stuff in the yard or on your person as fire starter, at the very least get out your firekit (you have one right?) and use the ferro rod.

This type of everyday skill integration is what will matter when you actually need it.  Shift your perspective to see what skills can be utilized during every day tasks.  Do not become a victim of “I don’t have enough time”…. or you might actually become a victim in a bad situation.

 

 

Kris Anderson 2017

Trust me…. I’m a Doctor

As an avid follower of many online groups and forums I often see inquiries on people who are looking for advice on firearms, gear and/or ammo. While looking for options is never a bad thing, taking advice from a complete stranger or even a trusted friend or family member is not always the best idea. We have four members who are taking turns writing this blog and I can guarantee that if you were to pose the question on what would be the perfect carry pistol, you would get 4 different answers!

I’m not attempting to say that any of the answers would be incorrect but if you were to go and sit at the gun counter at any local gun shop, it wouldn’t take long to see that some people will buy whatever someone is selling, hook, line and sinker. If you or someone you know is in the market the best thing to do is go to an indoor range and try out different pistols. Personal preference of the salesman or associate should not be the only deciding factor on a purchase. The right firearm to own is the firearm you can use! By saying “use” I mean a firearm that fits your hand and one you can put lead on target.

Contrary to popular belief, there are far more options than the desert eagle or glock that is glorified in most movies! Don’t be afraid to fire multiple different firearms at the range, after all that is what they are intended for! Once you are able to narrow down a weapon that works for you, there are a few different necessities that one will need. Now if this pistol is going to be something that you are going to everyday carry a decent belt is highly recommended. A good rigid belt works best for everyday carry. I personally have tried everything from your $12 dickies Walmart special to the $100 Boxer Tactical Apogee gun belt. From my experience I like either my HSG (high speed gear) or Boxer Tactical. Why spend that much on a belt? I used to always just buy the “Walmart special” but let me tell ya, it is ALWAYS a pain when they fail. It usually happens when least expected and you’re not at home or near somewhere with another belt readily available. My issues were always where the belt buckle itself ripped from the belt. Was it from the excess weight from the firearm or my ever expanding waist? Your guess is as good as mine. After burning through a few belts I decided to get all “tacticool” and purchase a legit gun belt. This was a decision that changed everyday carry for me. The belts are usually overbuilt… hell that high speed gear one you could probably use to tow a vehicle with! The rigidity of the belt also supports the firearm well and you will notice that your firearm seems lighter! With a cheaper belt I always had to cinch it tight in order to keep my pistol from drooping or tipping out which is what I believe caused the issues with the buckles. Once again it is all about preference and it is probably something you have to try and not take my word for. Just as pistol purchasing, you have to go with what works for you.

For anyone looking to check out different pistols and or gear, we are always more than willing to let you check out ours or even go to the range with you and let you run them for yourselves. Between the four of us, we have plenty of different makes, models and sizes to get that ball rolling.

 

Brad Michael – 2017

Eating Out

This week we are going to highlight a few useful plants that are native to the pacific northwest.  You have no doubt encountered these in the mountains and forests already.  If you forage for mushrooms, pick huckleberries, or just like to hike be on the lookout for these.  If you make a habit of identification then you will be able to find these plants with ease should the need ever arise.  As with any foraging of wild edibles DO NOT consume without being 100% certain you have identified it correctly.

 

Bear grass

looks like a giants q-tip and easy to identify.  Always find these at high elevation.  The root can be boiled and eaten like a potato, but is very stringy.  The most useful part is the leaves.  They are super strong and can be used for cordage, natives used this often to weave baskets.

 

Fireweed

Can be found in burnt areas and clear cuts.  Young leaves and shoots are high in vitamin C and can be eated raw or cooked, treat it like spinach.  In early stages of growth when the leaves are still pointed upward the whole plant can be cooked like asparagus.  The unique vein in the leaves can help with identification.  Can have a laxative effect if eaten in large quantities.

 

Pineapple weed

I always found this in heavily trod areas like rock driveways, but it can be found in the wild.  Often referred to as “wild chamomile” it has a very pleasant smell when crushed.  The dried flowers can be used to make a tea just like chamomile.  The leaves are edible as well, but are slightly bitter.

 

Wild Ginger

Found in dark forests with plenty of shade.  Look for it in our old growth cedar stands.  Treat it just like commercial ginger.  Although in the wild variety the leaves have a stronger flavor than the root.

 

We tried to pick a few that are not widely talked about, but are plentiful here in the pacific northwest.  Again do not pick and use any wild plant or fungus without being positive you have identified it properly and understand its uses.  Have fun looking for these plants and shoot us some pictures if you find these while out foraging.

 

 

 

 

Hello… Is there anybody in there…

In case any of you are keeping track, this is the 40th weekly blog that I have written. 40 week is long enough to gestate a human being for God’s sake. 40 times I have thought all week about what I wanted to share with you, then spent what few hours I have on the weekend alone (useually in the wee morning hours from about 4-6 AM, sometimes late at night) typing away at these keys in hopes that it means something to someone. (Remember that show Doogie Howser, and how at the end of the show he was always typing into his computer… It looks just like that, except I’m not a 14 year old surgeon, and a lot of times I have a cocktail by my side for encouragement)  We have spoken of everything from mall ninjas, to political theories. From forging your own knives to foraging for mushrooms. Every diamond has many facets I guess…But our conversations have become monologues, with myself giving long-winded speeches about how “MPBR” can be the best friend or your worse enemy of the average hunter depending on practical application, or about ways to not look like an idiot at the gun counter. Maybe im preaching to the choir, or maybe im just preaching to myself. I guess there is no way to know for sure…

“I ain’t never seen a hearse with a luggage rack”-George Strait. Kind of a weird thought huh? The new, cool, skinny jean, no socks with summer shoes in the winter, ride a bike with tires made of hemp (because its greener man), grow the front of your hair real long and cut the back short (then wear a beanie on the back of your head for some dumb reason, even in the summer) wear horn rim glasses with no lenses, use a beard as a fashion statement hipster revolution has bought into quite a few things (even though they will tell you that they invented them all). 2 of the biggest being “YOLO”, and “bucket lists”. YOLO (standing for: You Only Live Once) is pretty much their excuse for making stupid decisions. “Hey yo Bruh, why did you get that tattoo of my little pony burning an upside down cross on your face?” “YOLO Bruh.” That’s considered an acceptable answer! Never in my life have I ever wanted to strangle a man with his own purse, or choke someone out with their own man bun so badly. The “bucket List” is even funnier. People will see someone else doing something “Epic” (another word that drives me nuts) or “LEGIT” (maybe im just getting old, Matlock and porch-swings here I come) and start saying things like #BUCKETLIST. In other words stating that what ever said action was, they want to complete it before they die (kick the bucket). Maybe “YOLO” really does stand for “You Obviously Lack originality”, or maybe Jack Black was right when he stated that “I’m fairly certain that YOLO is just Carpe Diem for stupid people”. People get so caught up in what they can take from the world, they never give a thought to what they can give back. They want memories of experiences, that they can say changed their life. As a matter of fact, we all do, but in different ways. To validate ones life, some resort to jumping out of a plane, or scaling  Mt. Everest (by the way, I Google mapped it, and it looks like a HORRIBLE place to hunt, you may want to search a little longer for a better place to hang your deer stand for next season. I mean who is going to hike that far without even the chance of shooting a monster?)  Some even say that they “Live” for it. Well if that’s what it takes, so be it. But what is experience, and memory without companionship and the ability to share it with someone else? I personally have been privileged enough to experience a lot of different things in my life. Given I have not summited K2, but I have been to a lot of beautiful places, from remote glacial lakes to mountain peaks, I have had the ability to explore the world around me. Now being a father,a husband and a friend, I am blessed to have the opportunity to share these experiences with those that I care about.

I think of my bucketlist differently… My bucket is one that is full of hard-earned knowledge that I need to give away. What kind of legacy do I leave if my son does not walk out into this world with everything that I know already up his sleeve? Why do you always swing a baseball bat (or a golf club, fly rod, ax, or a sword ) with fast hands? Because the hands lead the weapon, the same way the brain leads the hands. Be it a solid base hit, a perfect cast, or a fell tree, it is all the same knowledge that one only gets once he understands it completely. Why should a 5-year-old understand how to make a debris shelter, how to trick a shy brook trout into collapsing on a fly, how to find a good crop of mushrooms, or the correct way to breast a grouse? Because it provides character, it allows him to be able to sustain himself if he decides to pursue the life style that I have, and because it keeps him close to his roots. It humbles you. Why does my son almost always shoot his Nerf gun from a prone position (feet flat as to not move back and forth and give away location), why does he (try at least, he still has little hands after all) hold his toy pistols with a thumbs forward IPSC grip? Well, that’s what Daddy does. Why do I do it that way? Because it cost me thousands of rounds of ammo, and countless hours at the range to find out that there is a reason why all the best shooters do it that way. Because it works, and it takes away a lot of the variables. By no way am I saying the my way is the only way, but it is a better starting point then ground zero. I guess thats what I have tried to do with these blogs. I feel that I have information that someone would like to have, I feel that the hours that I spend honing my craft can be put to good use. Maybe give someone a good nudge in the right direction, The problem is, I don’t know what you want to learn. If you want product reviews, I will start doing that. If you want more informative blogs explaining single subject matter (guns, knives, etc.) we can do that too. Or have you just grown tired of my writing, and want something different all together? Anything I have, and everything I know is available to you. If I don’t know the answer off-hand, I will do the research and give you whatever I can find, that knowledge is important to me too. But I want this to be a conversation and not a monologue. With out you, there is no reason for me to do this. Teach me something, pique my interest, we all have our comfort zones, and areas of expertise. Now its time to share them, after all you can’t take them with you when you go.

-Grant Willoughby 03/05/2017-

Watch your back…

Contrary to popular belief,on January 20th 2017 the next battle for gun rights began. With a Republican rule of the House, the Senate, the majority of Governor’s, and the next Supreme Court pick, a considerable portion of gun owners let out a collective sigh of relief. I mean after all, the potential of another Brady bill/AWB/Clinton fiasco was surely over right? Pardon the pun but, “WE” can now ramrod anything “WE” want straight down the barrel of the court system and straight into law right? When you have the power that’s what you do, or is it?

“We The People” are in charge, we are the ones that govern decisions that have to be made by electing officials that we believe are most like-minded to ourselves. To an extent we have ourselves to blame for what we consider “wrong doing” that has been done to us. If we are to make change, first we have to determine what changes have to be made, Then organize them from highest priority to lowest,and gather support from those that believe the same. As a collective, unified body, you then make public what you stand for and hope that others will agree, thus lending their support to a worthy cause. With enough support, voices, and a correct corse of actions, concerns, fears and want for change reach the ears of the right individuals in local government. In turn those local government officials, keep working those issue further up the ladder, hopefully gaining steam and followers (such as other county’s, states, or even country’s) Finally those well-organized ideas that have come about through correct measures, hard work, and research, are taken before the ears and eyes of our highest ranking elected officials. They are discussed, then voted upon. Pretty simple huh? No place in there did I say start a riot, or grab your rifle and head to the bell tower or nothin’, I also never said just ram em’ through, it doesn’t matter what other people think (we have checks and balances for a reason). The correct way to achieve change, right wrongs, or establish new standards and laws, is to use the ground work that has been laid out before you since the drafting of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. So what does this have to do with me personally (and since its not hunting season, you know that I’m going to start talking about guns!)? Whether you want to believe it or not, we are all falling victim to a huge invisible problem called “back door gun control”. No I’m not sitting on a bean bag chair inside my underground bunker, wearing my tin-foil helmet, listening to Rage Against the Machine, with a Che Guevara black light poster in the background. I am actually speaking more from a potential business stand point then anything else. I like to paint stuff, usually stencil work on items that I personally use,  rifle stocks, coffee mugs, Nalgene water bottle’s and the like. Which got me thinking about how I could blend a couple of things that I love together and actually make a living doing it. Cerakote seemed to be the answer, selling firearms (I have gunsmith certs, albeit with a bit of a key-holed wheel house (application wise) as for variety past hunting firearms and the usual suspect pistols, plus I have sold firearms before) and making them personalized would be a ton of fun, if not entirely  lucrative. So I started looking at what it would take to become a certified Cerakote application specialist. Well it’s 2 days process, in Oregon, there is a hotel relatively close, you have to bring your own material to paint (I.E. firearms, metal coffee cups, etc.) and you must have a type 07 ffl . That’s just to have them show you how to sand blast material, cook it off, mask it down, spray it, and bake it. Up until July 22nd, 2016 you had to pay $2,250 to ITAR as well just to be able to throw paint at a receiver. Add in the cost of a decent cure oven, material, Hvlp gravity feed spray gun, blast cabinet and a ventilation system and you quickly have $15,000-$25,000 tied up with nothing to paint on and no place to do it. If you want to actually “acccurize” firearms you must have tools, and insurance, and you are going to have to pay ITAR. Unless you want to roll the dice on a $250,000+ fine and a 10 year felony charge! If you manufacture or modify any part of the firearm, you have to register with ITAR. The government wants their share, one way or the other. The more it cost you to have modifications or repairs done to your firearms (even if the up-charged cost are justified due to increased licence fee’s, and registrations) the less likely you are to have those things done.(also the less number of working firearms in circulation). “But the Government, isn’t taking your guns”, some will say. That’s Backdoor gun control at its finest.  Anyway that you can put limits on firearms without taking the firearm directly out of the owners hand, is backdoor gun control. We have all seen it before and we have also seen that fallout from it also. The easiest way to control firearms is to regulate their ammunition. Lead is still one of the main components in a bullet. Lead is harmful and potentially deadly, so the government states that since lead is so dangerous, then it has to be closely regulated, and will be outlawed in some jurisdictions. New specialized projectiles have to be created, and they cost much more to produce so the cost of the ammo reflects those inherent cost.computer chipped firearms, and micro stamped ammo, it all serves the same purpose.  In 1993 New York Senate Democrat, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, proposed that taxes  be raised to 50 percent on most handgun ammunition and 10,000 percent on 9mm hollow points. Talk about a fast talking fly-by-night dirty way to directly control what the consumer is able to buy. It is called legislating something out of existence.  If ammo cost more, you buy less, and you shoot less. Its pretty cut and dry.

So in being conscientious gun owners like we are, what can we do? First of all we can actually be knowledgable about whats going on. Here are just a few items that will (hopefully) be going to vote this year:

Separation of Powers Restoration and Second Amendment Protection Act. (H.R.4321)

This legislation blocks any executive actions that violate the Second Amendment or infringe on Congress’s Article I responsibilities.  The bill also allows for civil action to be initiated in district courts to challenge such executive actions.

National Right to Carry Reciprocity Act (H.R. 402)

This commonsense legislation allows individuals with a concealed carry permit in one state to have that permit honored in another state that allows concealed carry.

The Second Amendment Defense Act

 This commonsense bill rejects the Obama Administration’s unacceptable violations of the Second Amendment and prohibits any new executive orders that restrict the Second Amendment.

The Lawful Purpose and Self Defense Act (H.R. 2710)

This bill is endorsed by the NRA and prevents ATF from arbitrarily reclassifying popular rifle ammunition as armor-piercing ammunition.  This legislation also allows for lawful non-NFA firearm and ammunition to be imported and sold in the U.S.  This bill also prevents shotguns, shotgun shells, and larger caliber rifles from being arbitrarily reclassified as destructive devices.

The Hearing Protection Act (H.R. 3799)

This legislation removes the current unreasonable restrictions on the purchase of silencers under the National Firearms Act.  Instead, the bill requires that sound suppressors be treated as ordinary firearms and subject to the typical NICS check.

Ending Operation Choke Point

H.R. 1413, the Firearms Manufacturers and Dealers Protection Act and H.R. 766, the Financial Institution Customer Protection Act.  Each measure makes conducting or facilitating Operation Choke Point illegal. Operation Choke Point was an unconstitutional program created by the Obama Administration that put pressure on banks and payment processors to shut down industries that President Obama and Attorney General didn’t like.

Right now the ball is in our court. But if left unchecked, and untested, those values that we speak so highly of can still be taken away and the clock is ticking. If you feel strongly about the hearing protection act, speak up now why you still have the opportunity. There are currently 3 years, 11 months, 7 hours and 45 left on Our 45th President’s term. Now is the time for you to use your voice, if there are things that you don’t like or that you would like to change, organize your thoughts and speak up, write a letter to your congressmen, start a petition, do things the right way. The worse thing that you can do when placed in an advantageous situation is to grow complacent. No one can make the decisions for you about what matters, you are crafting not only your own future, but the future of every generation to come. Hold fast to your values, don’t be taken advantage of, and always watch your back.

-Grant Willoughby 2/19/2017-

 

…And the truth shall set you free…

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-

 

Maybe, I’m Just Not Like You…

I can call a spade a spade… There is no such thing as “Perfect Grey”, there is always either a little more black, or a little more white. Every religion has expressed their idea of the same thing, calling it the “unswirving pivot“, “Zhong yong“,  or even “The Golden Mean“. All balance is only strived for, and never attained. It is the work and the acceptance of the challenge to create balance that truly establishes its given value. Can striving for balance compensate for ones “nature”? In the story, “The Scorpion and the Frog” (if you don’t know the story, I will try to paraphrase as much as I can. Basically a scorpion is sitting on a riverbank when a frog swims by. The scorpion asks the frog to give him a ride across the river on his back. The frog is pretty hesitant in his decision because he is afraid that the scorpion will sting him. Stating his concerns, the scorpion says that if he were to sting the frog, they would both certainly die. Upon hearing this, the frog agrees to carry the scorpion. Half way across the river the scorpion does in fact sting the frog. Feeling the sting, the frog looks back at the scorpion and asks why he would sting him thus effectively killing them both? To which the scorpion replies “It was in my nature to do so”.) One character stays absolutely true to his character, and one denying apprehension, attempts to create balance. They both end up in the same place. Is this purely an example of no good deed goes unpunished? Or is an explanation of what I like to call “you are what you are?

If you were to meet me for the first time, you would already have a preconceived connotation of who I am. I don’t think that I own a pair of jeans that don’t have a ring on the back left pocket. I wear  cowboy boots on the weekends when its nice, and Mucks or pack boots when it’s not. It’s hard to find me without some sort of cap on, I have tattoos, I drive an old four-wheel drive pickup, I have an old dog, and almost always carry (where permitted by law, and sometimes other places too). I like a cold beer, a hot fire and a rare steak. Yep redneck through and through right? Well maybe, or maybe not…Remember you can only judge the cover, if you wrote the book. I, just like you, am multi-faceted. I try to live my life in a way that may seem different or strange to some. I may have been born in 1982 but I think that somehow it could have been 100 years earlier and I would probably still be the person that I am today. I still hold old world standards in a modern age, and stick close to the skills that got us here. A frontiersmen living with the Jetsons,  I am an outcast in my own home. Technologically im not too savvy. Yes I can figure out a few network problems, understand the flow of computer programming, and I personally spend way to many hours at work staring at a computer screen, but in all actuality I am not the biggest fan of technological dependency. Everyone in my home has a smart phone or a tablet in front of them when ever they sit down, that just isn’t me. No I don’t own a tinfoil hat or any of that (I’m sure I can make one if the time arises), and that isn’t why I am not a fan. I just think there is something to be said about putting your nose to a book, or your hands on the tools, if you actually really care to learn something. I had 2 teachers in highschool that I can honestly say probably had more influence on this mindset then they probably will ever know. One was of the mindset that “if you are given a problem, and tools… A solution will be found”. The other was of the idea that “you don’t have to know everything, whats important is to know where to get the information if you need it” Talk about  complete contradictory life lessons (Yin and yang?) One says learn everything with experience (whether you need to or not), the other says learn nothing, just know where to find the solution (when you need to). I guess that maybe that is balance, but I’m more the first class then the second (the grey is a little more black, than white). Just because I have a beard, guns and tattoos doesn’t make me an operator, any more than the fact that I drive old trucks, with an old dog, and play a guitar makes me a country singer. It is what I put into all things that gives them their value. Labels are what “WE” give in order to easier classify what “WE” are. I guess “WE” are our labels, even if “WE” don’t want them.

Life is pursuit of balance, balance is not giving up on your character to become something that you are not. Balance your being, if you are naturally a giver, don’t stop giving. if you are a worker, don’t stop working. Balance is a life of non-excess, but can there be an excess of being too honest and trustworthy? Has anyone ever be charged with teaching too much, or helping too much? I guess that living in North Idaho I feel a responsibility, to uphold my label, I’m just a “northern redneck”, and we are a different breed (me especially having one parent from Oklahoma, and the other from Connecticut,  and being born and raised in northern Idaho) we accept others burdens as our own. I can’t tell you how many times my Father gave up his weekends helping the neighbors fix their cars or plowing their snow. My Mother fed the hungry mouths of public elementary schools, as well as always being my biggest fan, no matter what my pursuit was (she still is).I inherited all of these traits, when I see someone stuck dropping their child off at the day care down the road, you bet your ass I head over and give them a push. On the way to work someone has slid into the ditch… You got it, pull over grab my tow-strap and shovel and try to make the day a little better than it previously was. (word to the wise, as the roads get worse, leave your house earlier. Not only do you not have to rush *Thus ending up in the ditch* , but you have the opportunity to lend a helping hand, you never know when that stuck car is going to be yours… I’ve been there, and watched people drive by, too busy or too late to help.) So what is it, are you the frog or the scorpion? Will you stay true to character, and do as nature wills. Or will you try to achieve balance, potentially losing it all in the process, and still come to the same fate? Will you find the golden mean? I hate to think of a world where you are chastised, even punished for your good deeds. (Even though we have come to that already) I work with a fair amount of people who have very little knowledge of the world outside of WI-FI. Everyday I try to drop a bit of knowledge about the important stuff, being prepared, survival, firearms, it’s a constant struggle to help them realise that there is more to life then what Iphone you have and what level you are on candy crush. When will we come to the realization that, that is our excess? Maybe the idea of true balance is about what we choose to do, not about who we are? No one told Budha to be less Budha-ish, or looked at Laozi and said “hey let’s only do the Tao thing in moderation alright?” You HAVE to be true to yourself, and you HAVE to find a balance in your actions. We all are just hoping that maybe, someday, we can be something or someone who is remembered not only because of what we are, but because of what we do. If you are not willing to deal with the sting, in order to share the gifts you possess, and who you actually are.. Well then, Maybe I’m just not like you