Economic Indicators

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Saturday, July 12, 2014

Pandemic Disease as a Collapse Catalyst

Note:  Since I wrote this story preparing to post it there have been two related incidents involving disease or pandemic catalysts:  1 - vials of  small pox being found in the closet of the National Institute of Health,...obviously some employee planning, maybe years ago, to steal this deadly virus, and 2 - a case of Pneumonic Plague found in Colorado - and this disease killed millions of people in the Middle Ages. 

Friends of mine in Texas have been sending me e-mails and links about the mass of illegal aliens, many of whom are "unaccompanied alien children", that are flooding the border. We have all seen the news article of the federal government busing groups of these illegals to military bases and other towns where they will be released after being given a date to come back for an immigration court hearing. I am being told that 99 - 100% of these released aliens do not come back or otherwise appear for an immigration hearing nor does the federal government know where these illegal aliens are.

Some of the other related stories are that there are many sick illegal aliens having H1N1 Flu, Scabies, Dengue fever and even TB, then not only being released but being bused to locations in the interior U.S. before being released.

As we know about communicable diseases and the incubation timeline, some aliens who are sick or carrying a communicable disease will be asymptomatic for a numbers of days until they become disease spreaders.

Imagine a terrorist group either unwittingly infecting aliens right before they cross into the U.S. Or infecting jihadist volunteers who enter the U.S. to spread a disease. What would that be like if that disease was a weaponized disease?

At the very least this should bring to light medical screening processes and standards for prepper groups if/when they encounter refugees knocking at the gates. Do you have procedures? Protective equipment? AT the very least rubber gloves and masks!  Any test equipment aside from visual inspection? If you plan on the possibility of accepting refugees, do you have a quarantine process?

I was sent this news article written by Todd Starnes of Fox News concerning this threat of contagious diseases, and the Federal governments desire to minimize reports of the border being over run and the disease threat these illegal immigrants bring.

Medical staff warned: Keep your mouths shut about illegal immigrants or face arrest

A government-contracted security force threatened to arrest doctors and nurses if they divulged any information about the contagion threat at a refugee camp housing illegal alien children at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas, sources say.

In spite of the threat, several former camp workers broke their confidentiality agreements and shared exclusive details with me about the dangerous conditions at the camp. They said taxpayers deserve to know about the contagious diseases and the risks the children pose to Americans. I have agreed to not to disclose their identities because they fear retaliation and prosecution.

My sources say Americans should be very concerned about the secrecy of the government camps.

“There were several of us who wanted to talk about the camps, but the agents made it clear we would be arrested,” a psychiatric counselor told me. “We were under orders not to say anything.”

The sources said workers were guarded by a security force from the BCFS, which the Department of Health and Human Services hired to run the Lackland Camp.

The sources say security forces called themselves the “Brown Shirts.”

“It was a very submissive atmosphere,” the counselor said. “Once you stepped onto the grounds, you abided by their laws – the Brown Shirt laws.”

She said the workers were stripped of their cellphones and other communication devices. Anyone caught with a phone was immediately fired.

“Everyone was paranoid,” she said. “The children had more rights than the workers.”

She said children in the camp had measles, scabies, chicken pox and strep throat as well as mental and emotional issues.

“It was not a good atmosphere in terms of health,” she said. “I would be talking to children and lice would just be climbing down their hair.”

A former nurse at the camp told me she was horrified by what she saw.

“We have so many kids coming in that there was no way to control all of the sickness – all this stuff coming into the country,” she said. “We were very concerned at one point about strep going around the base.”

Both the counselor and the nurse said their superiors tried to cover up the extent of the illnesses.

“When they found out the kids had scabies, the charge nurse was adamant – ‘Don’t mention that. Don’t say scabies,’” the nurse recounted. “But everybody knew they had scabies. Some of the workers were very concerned about touching things and picking things up. They asked if they should be concerned, but they were told don’t worry about it.”

The nurse said the lice issue was epidemic – but everything was kept “hush-hush.”

“You could see the bugs crawling through their hair,” she said. “After we would rinse out their hair, the sink would be loaded with black bugs.”

The nurse told me she became especially alarmed because their files indicated the children had been transported to Lackland on domestic charter buses and airplanes.

“That’s what alerted me,” she said. “Oh, my God. They’re flying these kids around. Nobody knows that these children have scabies and lice. To tell you the truth, there’s no way to control it.”

I don't mean to upset anyone's Independence Day vacation plans, but were these kids transported to the camps before or after they were deloused? Anyone who flies the friendly skies could be facing a public health concern.

The counselor told me the refugee camp resembled a giant emergency room – off limits to the public. “They did not want the community to know,” she said. “I initially spoke out at Lackland because I had a concern the children’s mental health care was not being taken care of.”

She said the breaking point came when camp officials refused to hospitalize several children who were suicidal. “I made a recommendation that a child needed to be sent to a psychiatric unit,” the counselor told me. “He was reaching psychosis. He was suicidal. Instead of treating him, they sent him off to a family in the United States.”

She said she filed a Child Protective Services report and quit her job. “I didn’t want to lose my license if this kid committed suicide,” she told me. “I was done.”

The counselor kept a detailed journal about what happened during her tenure at the facility. “When people read that journal they are going to be astonished,” she said. ‘I don’t think they will believe what is going on in America.”

So it was not a great surprise, she said, when she received a call from federal agents demanding that she return to the military base and hand over her journal.

She said she declined to do so. “I didn’t go back to Lackland,” she said. Both workers told me while they have no regrets, they want to remain anonymous for fear of reprisals.

“They’re going to crush the system,” the nurse told me. “We can’t sustain this. They are overwhelming the system and I think it’s a travesty.”

BCFS spokeswoman Krista Piferrer tells me the agency takes “any allegation of malfeasance or inappropriate care of a child very seriously.” “There are a number of checks and balances to ensure children are receiving appropriate and adequate mental health care,” she said.

Piferrer said the clinicians are supervised by a federal field specialist from HHS’s Office of Refugee Resettlement. She also said BCFS have 58 medical professionals serving at Lackland.

“Every illness, whether it is a headache or something more serious, is recorded in a child’s electronic medical record and posted on WebEOC – a real-time, web-based platform that is visible to not only BCFS but the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,” she said. As for those brown shirts, the BCFS said they are “incident management team personnel” – who happen to wear tan shirts.

My sources say Americans should be very concerned about the secrecy of the government camps. “This is just the beginning,” one source told me. "It is a long-term financial responsibility.”

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Survival Planning, Prepping and Bugging Out With a Handicapped Family Member

Urban Survival Skills received this request for advice concerning prepping and bug out with a disabled child. I edited the letter to provide some semblance of OPSEC for the writer but want to post this to reach a larger group for potential advice to this prepper with a special needs child.

I am a single parent of a severely disabled child. My child is wheelchair bound, tube fed, in diapers, and developmentally at a pre-schooler level. My child is on medication for seizures. I'm stockpiling Nutren, diapers, and feeding supplies at our family farm which is a fairly short drive away (approx. 28 miles) though a suburban area. I am very concerned about getting myself and my child to the famr as well as having meds for long term care in the case of disaster. Could you please give advice on:

1) How do I know when to bug out?
2) Bug out bags. My child is 80 lbs and I'm 115 lbs. I can put a bag on the wheelchair chair and carry a bug out bag myself, but what weight? What are top priority items?
3) I have a small 4 wheel drive vehicle if driving is an option. Any advice on choosing route, stopping for extra fuel, etc.?
4) I have safety concerns about walking alone with my child. Advice? I am still learning to shoot and getting a gun soon. I am in pretty good shape, but small.
5) What can I do to get seizure meds for long term?

We are working on getting the farm prepared with food, water systems, generators, etc. at the my relatives adjoining property. Getting there with my child safely is my biggest concern. Any advice you have is appreciated. Thank you!
Okay readers, lets help this person out. Here is my initial response:

When to Bug Out. This is an individual call and not a one size fits all protocol. It is based on how safe and prepared you are where you are currently at, and, how far you have to go and the associated risks involved with that movement. I can advise that it would be too late when there are riots in the streets over food, or lack of food; too late when mass of refugees flood the routes; too late when cell phone communications are down; and, too late when martial law and therefore freedom of movement is restricted.

  It may be time to Bug Out when utilities (water and electricity) are intermittent and there are long lines at gas stations and grocery stores with associated shortages. It may be time when your and instincts tell you things are not going to get better. I advise multiple means of communications between you and your family members or friends that are going to bug out and rally on the farm. Develop a brevity code as well so if and when you have comms (voice or text) you can minimize transmission times and therefore chances of misunderstandings or intermittent service cutting you off.

Bug Out Bags. I think the priority are all the meds and supplies necessary for your child. Food, water and all gear necessary to support a walk from your house to the Bug Out location (the farm). This may include food that does not have to be cooked. Depending upon where you live and the seasons, e.g..weather factors, you may need sleeping bags or cold weather gear and things like that. In your case a short walk to your Bug Out location (the farm) could be accomplished in one day, but if you are pushing a wheelchair this may turn into 2 maybe even 4 days depending again on factors outside your control such as weather, threat, etc.

If you have selected Bug Out routes you may elect to emplace a small cache or two to support the movement to your Bug Out location (the farm) as support in case you can't make the distance as planned or the threat is too much that it reduces your travel speed.         

Bug Out Vehicle. A 4x4 is ideal, especially one that's good on gas and has a short wheel base for mobility. If you never let your vehicle get below 1/2 tank of gas you'll have plenty to make the Bug Out movement, based on the travel distance you mentioned. But I would advise an extra 5 gallon fuel can or two. Keep these full and rotate fuel every month. Or you can just get them filed when you think the collapse is beginning and when fuel is till available. You should have several routes if possible. When you have to Bug Out, choose the route based on the current events and threats. You need to drive routes as a rehearsal. You should also look at several foot routes in case you have to move over land on foot. Look for routes that provide cover and concealment and will not be routes for the refugee traffic or obvious routes for anyone else.  This is going to be hard to move a wheel chair over.  Maybe you can look at an ATV with a small trailer to move your child with?    

Walking Alone/Security/Weapon Choice.   By all means learn how to shoot and buy a gun. Actually a handgun and a rifle would be good. Weight and bulk of ammunition is going to impact what you can carry overland on foot. Think about pre-positioning additional ammunition and firearms at the farm. But if you are planning on Bugging Out by yourself, driving or walking, you will need to protect yourself. A semi-auto, magazine fed rifle such as an M-1 carbine, Mini-14, M-4/AR-15 type clone - these are all lightweight (as they come) and would allow you the firepower to defend yourself against multiple bad guys. And here's a hint, almost everybody will be a bad guy.

I have recently been in contact with a lady who just could not afford a modern magazine fed rifle such as an M-4/AR-15 type.  She already had a .22 LR revolver, so she ended up buying a Ruger 10/22 semi-auto .22 LR rifle and a couple of large capacity magazines for it.   Certainly a person would not want to have their safety dependent upon a rimfire cartridge,....but the first rule of a gun fight is to have a, gun and ammo compatibility plus affordability was paramount to this lady.      

Lastly, Medications. I know this is a primary concern of yours. Medications have a shelf life, which is usually several years after the expiration date if you store it in a safe and controlled manner. Research what Vet (animal) meds could possibly be used to mitigate or treat your child's seizures.   Locate the nearest Vet. Many rural vets operate out of a truck with a refrigerator. Vets can also serve as make shift Doctors too in an emergency. You may be able to stock up some meds if you don't use them but continue to get scripts for them but be aware that this is likely illegal. 

You may need to have some silver in order to barter for some meds during a collapse.  Consider having a silver bullion in 1 ounce rounds of bars in case this is the case.  

You have tough conditions to work out, but I know you can do it as you have no other choice.  Get to know your neighbors around the farm (your Bug Out location).  If the houses are close enough you may be able to string a couple of TA-1 military phones and wire between to facilitate communications.  Make sure that stocking food, seeds and having a safe water source are taken care of at the farm as well. 

I hope readers will respond with some additional advice. Many, if not most, of the readers will have better ideas.  Good luck and be safe.       

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

As Oil Prices Go, So Does Silver - Prepare for Economic Collapse

An article posted on Deviant Investor makes the case that silver is related to crude oil prices. The original title of the article is: "What Crude Oil Says About Silver" - If you want to know where silver prices are going, ask crude oil! Prices are volatile, spiked high and low in 2008, and have, on average, risen steadily for the past 14 years.

Crude Oil Prices:

December 1998 Crude Oil price was under $11 (silver roughly $4.85)

January 2000: Crude Oil price was about $24 (silver roughly $5.25)

July 2008: Crude Oil price topped about $147 (silver roughly $18.40)

December 2008: Crude Oil prices crashed to about $35 (silver roughly $10.50)

June 20, 2014: Current price is about $106 (silver roughly $19.80)

Summary:

Politics: The situation in Iraq, a major oil producer, seems to deteriorate every day. The chaos and violence could easily spread and that chaos and violence will reduce supply and kick crude oil prices higher. Adding to the chaos, central banks will “print” more euros, yen, and dollars and governments will add to their mountains of debt. Price inflation will accelerate and the dollar will weaken further.

Demand: More cars in Asia need gasoline. Even if the world economies contract, demand for crude oil should continue to rise.

Crude Oil Outlook: Crude oil prices have many reasons to explode higher and few to drop lower. The trend has been up for more than a decade. Central banks will print, politicians will instigate more wars and invasions, and each euro, yen, and dollar will purchase even less crude oil and gasoline. It is business as usual, but with an extra dollop of chaos, war, and price inflation tossed into the mix….

Conclusion: Higher oil prices, more military spending, more debt, more chaos, higher consumer prices.

1) Higher oil prices, more military spending, more debt, more chaos, higher consumer prices.

2) Crude and silver have been trending upward for 12+ years. Politics and war will accelerate the price increases.

3) The 52 week moving average of crude is about $100 – below the linear trend. Market price is a bit higher with plenty of room to spike much higher as Middle-East and Ukrainian warfare escalates.

4) The 52 week moving average of silver and the current market price are both about $20 – well below the linear trend. Silver could more than double in price and not violate the 12+ year upward trend.

5) Crude oil prices are moving higher and silver prices will follow.

6) Rig for stormy weather – coming in from Iraq, Syria, Ukraine, Russia, South China Sea, “amateur hour” in foreign policy, more wars and invasions, and much of Asia reducing their dependence upon the dollar and Treasury bonds.

7) Statistical correlation between crude and silver for 12+ years of weekly smoothed prices is about 0.84 while correlation between unsmoothed weekly prices is about 0.79. Crude and silver prices are closely aligned in the long term.

7) Preparation is essential.

8) Silver purchases are good preparation.

UrbanMan's Comments: I manipulated the Defiant Investors article only in re- arranging how the facts and opinions were presented, and added the Silver Price to the month and year crude oil price listing, but the facts remain the same. We will have an increase in oil prices. It will drive prices on all other commodities higher - it only remains undetermined whether or not the increase will be fast or slow and if the prices will cause a food crisis and therefore an economic then societal collapse as the Government cannot handle another 20 to 50 million on food stamps, nor would food stamps pay for much food stuffs with the increased prices. Imagine the now 50 million people on food stamps, living day to day, and another 20 to 50 million added to that population. That's close to 1/3 of the population starving and maybe more importantly, being extremely pissed off at government who they see as the entity that should be saving them.

Silver (and gold) is a safe bet as a survival prep. It's the same as having medical kit and supplies as if you need it, you really need it. It may be the only thing that is worth bartering with. As the Defiant Investor articles explains if gasoline goes to $5.00 a gallon, today's Silver at under $21.00 an ounce will in al probability be worth $50 an ounce. Imagine if gasoline is higher in price and availability is greatly reduced. What will silver be worth then? I put my money where my mouth is, I bought another 42 ounces a few weeks ago when it was around $19.50 an ounce.