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Friday, March 21, 2014

TEOTWAWKI - The End of The World As We Know It

Received from Herbert who is prepping in Missouri. ”Have you thought about how much the interest rates will rise when the economy starts to go downhill? I think we’ll see rates going up and up and when around the 12% mark for homes and vehicles, which would make credit cards around 24%, there will be a food shortage, or maybe a money shortage, or maybe both and food riots will commence in the inner cities. The government will be forced to act with military forces occupying the cities and our enemies will act. The Russian’s can’t re-take Crimea but if they haven’t taken Ukraine by then, they will. Then Poland and Hungary. China will move to control the China Sea, Japan and the Philippines. It’s going to be a mess. Have you thought about the strategic move to by survival equipment on credit such as a new truck, plenty of spare tires and an additional fuel tank, a couple of expensive rifles and ammunition and long term food? A prepper could end up new long lasting gear and be better prepared and after the economy collapse, will there be any institutions to collect? Land could be bought also. A Bug Out site with a water source in an area with decent weather, decent neighbors and no big cities. What say you?”

Herbert – I just cannot advocate going into a contract planning to default – however I think you’re point is valid is that if you need something expensive that you have to buy on credit, and is vital to your survival plans, then get it now before you can’t afford it. And if the interest rates rise and/or the institutions collapse, money is going to be your last concern. Unless you are counting your gold and silver as money.

However, on your point that the coming collapse will be based or begun due to economic issues, such as the collapse of the dollar and influenced by world events,....well, that is pretty valid. A recent article from Peak Prosperity gives us a little more insight:

Economist Warns of Collapse Risk: “Will Not Allow Life to Continue As We Know It”

Earlier this week we noted that an invasion of the Ukraine by Vladimir Putin would likely lead to a complete destruction of U.S. stock markets. It’s not so much the invasion force itself, but rather, the economic maneuvers that would come with it should Russia take this course of action.

Well known economist and founder of the Shadow Stats web site John Williams seems to agree. If Russia were to begin unloading US Dollars it would almost instantly lead to a collapse of not only our financial markets, but our entire way of life. And while Russia alone may not have the economic power to single-handedly crush the U.S. economy, if their trading partners and allies like China got into the mix, coupled with front-running investors who may suspect the move is about to happen, it could well be a blood bath on a global scale.

This wouldn’t even be an issue if the U.S. economy were operating at healthy levels, but as Williams notes in the following interview with Greg Hunter’s USA Watchdog, it’s anything but:

What you have to keep in mind is that back in 2008 we had one of the greatest financial crises the United States ever faced. The system was on the brink of collapse at that point in time.

What the Fed and the federal government did was spend every penny they could, anything they could create or anything they could guarantee. They did everything they could possibly do to keep the system from crashing. They guaranteed all bank accounts. So, they saved the system, but now what they did has not borne fruit. We have not seen an economic recovery. We have not seen a return of health to the banking system.

So, the system is very vulnerable; and if the Russians carry through with their threat, you have, indeed, the risk of it collapsing the system.

It does have the effect of creating a hyperinflation, which I think it would. It’s the type of circumstance that will not allow life to continue as we know it because the U.S. is not able to handle hyperinflation.

We’re not structured for it. Zimbabwe had one of the worst hyperinflations that anyone has ever seen. They were still able to function for a while because they get paid in a rapidly depreciating currency. It was so rapid it became like toilet paper overnight… they would go to a black market and exchange it for dollars. We (the U.S.) don’t have a black market to escape from our dollars. Gold is probably the closest thing to that. Gold will tend to rally here as the dollar sells off, barring very heavy intervention by the central banks which you may see.

The fundamentals will eventually dominate, and you will see a very weak dollar and very strong gold coming out of this. As it stands now, even without Russia and China, our economic system is, once again, on the cusp of a serious deleveraging. John Williams highlights that January retail sales, a leading indicator of economic health, gave the strongest signal since September 2007 that a recession is looming, if not already here.

One huge indicator of this is that Staples, a leading supplier of office supplies nationwide, is shutting the doors on 225 stores. And, they aren’t the only ones getting hammered by a pullback in consumer spending. The world’s largest retailer, Walmart, saw sales drop over 20% year-over-year in the fourth quarter of 2013. And as trend forecaster Gerald Celente once noted, “as goes Walmart, so goes America.”

So, in reality, Russia can probably sit back and watch the U.S. economy slip into a coma over the next couple of years. Of course, if their intention is to return their nation to super power status, an attack on the US economy by dumping the dollar would speed up the process and amplify the fall-out, causing a multi-generational depression.

Last year Barack Obama faced off with Russia over Syria, a situation that could easily have led to a much wider conflict. Now, the same players have taken the game to Ukraine. In both instances we’ve heard warnings of a potential collapse of our economic system in the event of an escalation. The point is that it really doesn’t matter if it’s Syria, Ukraine, Iran or some other periphery conflict. It should be clear that eventually this is exactly how it’s going to play out with respect to the US dollar. China and Russia will make their move when they are good and ready. When that day comes the implosion will be so fast that most Americans won’t even realize what has happened or know how to cope.

UrbanMan's comments:

1. It is a fact that we are not prepared for Hyper-inflation. We do not even grow enough food to support our own country. We (as a country) and we (as prepared individuals) must be able to grow and harvest food to support our survival. If you are not planning or prepared to grow your own food, then you are a fool.

2. Zimbabwe indeed had hyper-inflation,....what they also had was rampant violence from the starving and pissed off poor on those who owned farms and manufacturing. That will happen in this country. The government is certainly creating a base for it with all the class warfare and themes that the rich are creating the havoc in this country.

3. "The U.S. does not have a Black Market to escape to....." Yes we do. It's called Gold, Silver, Fuel, Food, other commodities,'s called ammunition, tools and services. But it is only valid for those who prepare.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

15 Reasons Why Your Food Prices Are About To Start Soaring

This article came from Michael Snyder of The Economic Collapse blog, posted on Zero Hedge, and highlights to end to not only stock food but to become food self-sufficient. Growing and harvesting your own food - that may mean greenhouse throughout the year. It may mean being in a community where livestock are prevalent and the ability to barter for meat on the hoof; trade produce for other food items, etc. The other point is to try and make yourself recession or depression proof. Consider having some level of gold and silver on hand. Items for barter are good too. Cash on hand for when the banks or ATM's run dry or have "holidays" or withdrawal restrictions....all things to consider.

Did you know that the U.S. state that produces the most vegetables is going through the worst drought it has ever experienced and that the size of the total U.S. cattle herd is now the smallest that it has been since 1951? Just the other day, a CBS News article boldly declared that "food prices soar as incomes stand still", but the truth is that this is only just the beginning. If the drought that has been devastating farmers and ranchers out west continues, we are going to see prices for meat, fruits and vegetables soar into the stratosphere. Already, the federal government has declared portions of 11 states to be "disaster areas", and California farmers are going to leave half a million acres sitting idle this year because of the extremely dry conditions.

Sadly, experts are telling us that things are probably going to get worse before they get better (if they ever do). As you will read about below, one expert recently told National Geographic that throughout history it has been quite common for that region of North America to experience severe droughts that last for decades. In fact, one drought actually lasted for about 200 years. So there is the possibility that the drought that has begun in the state of California may not end during your entire lifetime.

This drought has gotten so bad that it is starting to get national attention. Barack Obama visited the Fresno region on Friday, and he declared that "this is going to be a very challenging situation this year, and frankly, the trend lines are such where it's going to be a challenging situation for some time to come."

According to NBC News, businesses across the region are shutting down, large numbers of workers are leaving to search for other work, and things are already so bad that it "calls to mind the Dust Bowl of the 1930s"... In the state's Central Valley — where nearly 40 percent of all jobs are tied to agriculture production and related processing — the pain has already trickled down. Businesses across a wide swath of the region have shuttered, casting countless workers adrift in a downturn that calls to mind the Dust Bowl of the 1930s.

If you will recall, there have been warnings that Dust Bowl conditions were going to return to the western half of the country for quite some time.

Now the mainstream media is finally starting to catch up.

And of course these extremely dry conditions are going to severely affect food prices. The following are 15 reasons why your food bill is going to start soaring.....

#1 2013 was the driest year on record for the state of California, and 2014 has been exceptionally dry so far as well.

#2 According to the U.S. Drought Monitor, 91.6 percent of the entire state of California is experiencing "severe to exceptional drought" even as you read this article.

#3 According to CNBC, it is being projected that California farmers are going to let half a million acres of farmland sit idle this year because of the crippling drought.

#4 Celeste Cantu, the general manager for the Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority, says that this drought could have a "cataclysmic" impact on food prices...

Given that California is one of the largest agricultural regions in the world, the effects of any drought, never mind one that could last for centuries, are huge. About 80 percent of California's freshwater supply is used for agriculture. The cost of fruits and vegetables could soar, says Cantu. "There will be cataclysmic impacts."

#5 Mike Wade, the executive director of the California Farm Water Coalition, recently explained which crops he believes will be hit the hardest...
Hardest hit would be such annual row crops as tomatoes, broccoli, lettuce, cantaloupes, garlic, peppers and corn. Wade said consumers can also expect higher prices and reduced selection at grocery stores, particularly for products such as almonds, raisins, walnuts and olives.

#6 As I discussed in a previous article, the rest of the nation is extremely dependent on the fruits and vegetables grown in California. Just consider the following statistics regarding what percentage of our produce is grown in the state...
-99 percent of the artichokes
-44 percent of asparagus
-two-thirds of carrots
-half of bell peppers
-89 percent of cauliflower
-94 percent of broccoli
-95 percent of celery
-90 percent of the leaf lettuce
-83 percent of Romaine lettuce
-83 percent of fresh spinach
-a third of the fresh tomatoes
-86 percent of lemons
-90 percent of avocados
-84 percent of peaches
-88 percent of fresh strawberries
-97 percent of fresh plums

#7 Of course it isn't just agriculture which will be affected by this drought. Just consider this chilling statement by Tim Quinn, the executive director of the Association of California Water Agencies...
"There are places in California that if we don’t do something about it, tens of thousands of people could turn on their water faucets and nothing would come out."

#8 The Sierra Nevada snowpack is only about 15 percent of what it normally is. As the New York Times recently explained, this is going to be absolutely devastating for Californians when the warmer months arrive...
Experts offer dire warnings. The current drought has already eclipsed previous water crises, like the one in 1977, which a meteorologist friend, translating into language we understand as historians, likened to the “Great Depression” of droughts. Most Californians depend on the Sierra Nevada for their water supply, but the snowpack there was just 15 percent of normal in early February.

#9 The underground aquifers that so many California farmers depend upon are being drained at a staggering rate...
Pumping from aquifers is so intense that the ground in parts of the valley is sinking about a foot a year. Once aquifers compress, they can never fill with water again.
It’s no surprise Tom Willey wakes every morning with a lump in his throat. When we ask which farmers will survive the summer, he responds quite simply: those who dig the deepest and pump the hardest.

#10 According to an expert interviewed by National Geographic, the current drought in the state of California could potentially last for 200 years or more as some mega-droughts in the region have done in the past...
California is experiencing its worst drought since record-keeping began in the mid 19th century, and scientists say this may be just the beginning. B. Lynn Ingram, a paleoclimatologist at the University of California at Berkeley, thinks that California needs to brace itself for a megadrought—one that could last for 200 years or more.

#11 Much of the western U.S. has been exceedingly dry for an extended period of time, and this is hurting huge numbers of farmers and ranchers all the way from Texas to the west coast...
The western United States has been in a drought that has been building for more than a decade, according to climatologist Bill Patzert of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
“Ranchers in the West are selling off their livestock," Patzert said. "Farmers all over the Southwest, from Texas to Oregon, are fallowing in their fields because of a lack of water. For farmers and ranchers, this is a painful drought.”

#12 The size of the U.S. cattle herd has been shrinking for seven years in a row, and it is now the smallest that it has been since 1951. But our population has more than doubled since then.

#13 Extremely unusual weather patterns are playing havoc with crops all over the planet right now. The following is an excerpt from a recent article by Lizzie Bennett...
Peru, Venezuela, and Bolivia have experienced rainfall heavy enough to flood fields and rot crops where they stand. Volcanic eruptions in Ecuador are also creating problems due to cattle ingesting ash with their feed leading to a slow and painful death.

Parts of Australia have been in drought for years affecting cattle and agricultural production.

Rice production in China has been affected by record low temperatures.

Large parts of the UK are underwater, and much of that water is sea water which is poisoning the soil. So wet is the UK that groundwater is so high it is actually coming out of the ground and adding to the water from rivers and the sea. With the official assessment being that groundwater flooding will continue until MAY, and that’s if it doesn’t rain again between now and then. The River Thames is 65 feet higher than normal in some areas, flooding town after town as it heads to the sea.

#14 As food prices rise, our incomes are staying about the same. The following is from a CBS News article entitled "Food prices soar as incomes stand still"...
While the government says prices are up 6.4 percent since 2011, chicken is up 18.4 percent, ground beef is up 16.8 percent and bacon has skyrocketed up 22.8 percent, making it a holiday when it's on sale.

#15 As I have written about previously, median household income has fallen for five years in a row. So average Americans are going to have to make their food budgets stretch more than they ever have before as this drought drags on.
If the drought does continue to get worse, small agricultural towns all over California are going to die off.

For instance, consider what is already happening to the little town of Mendota.......
The farms in and around Mendota are dying of thirst. The signs are everywhere. Orchards with trees lying on their sides, as if shot. Former farm fields given over to tumbleweeds. Land and cattle for sale, cheap. Large numbers of agricultural workers continue to hang on, hoping that somehow there will be enough work for them. But as Evelyn Nieves recently observed, panic is starting to set in...

Off-season, by mid-February, idled workers are clearly anxious. Farmworkers and everyone else who waits out the winter for work (truckers, diesel providers, packing suppliers and the like) are nearing the end of the savings they squirrel away during the season. The season starts again in March, April at the latest, but no one knows who will get work when the season begins, or how much.

People are scared, panicked even. I did not write this article so that you would panic. Yes, incredibly hard times are coming. If you will recall, the 1930s were also a time when the United States experienced extraordinarily dry weather conditions and a tremendous amount of financial turmoil. We could very well be entering a similar time period.

Worrying about this drought is not going to change anything. Instead of worrying, we should all be doing what we can to store some things up while food is still relatively cheap. Our grandparents and our great-grandparents that lived during the days of the Great Depression knew the wisdom of having a well-stocked food pantry, and it would be wise to follow their examples. Please share this article with as many people as you can. The United States has never faced anything like this during most of our lifetimes. We need to shake people out of their "normalcy bias" and get them to understand that big changes are coming.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Will Gun Registration and Confiscation Spark the Collapse?

Will Gun Registration and confiscation Spark the Collapse? Or is this just a symptom of larger problems? There is a lot in the news today and the past couple of weeks concerning the State of Connecticut's efforts to get their citizens to register guns (and magazines). We all know that registration is the necessary step to enable confiscation. What will you do if your state or the federal government requires registration? Latest article from below:

Think back to the day that the Boston Marathon bombers were found to be still in the city and martial law nearly took effect. The streets were empty, people were asked to remain indoors, and police took over the city streets with vehicles you typically only see in movies.

Now, imagine a whole state with thousands of gun owners who refuse to register their firearms and magazines even though the government is threatening them to do so. That is exactly the scenario we are looking at in the state of Connecticut.

In 2013, a law was passed that citizens of the state of Connecticut would have to register their modern sporting rifles and high-capacity magazines. For example, an AR-15 with a 30 round magazine, not only would the firearm itself need to be registered, but also the magazine. The government estimated that there are somewhere in between 100,000-300,000 in the state of Connecticut with no way to prove so. However, only 50,000 have given into the government’s deadline of January 1, 2014 to have these firearms and accessories registered.

That leaves at a minimum 50,000 firearms unregistered at this time. That means that at least 50,000 citizens are facing Class D felony charges in the state at this time. These citizens have now begun receiving letters.

From the Journal Inquirer:
When state officials decided to accept some gun registrations and magazine declarations that arrived after a Jan. 4 deadline, they also had to deal with those applications that didn’t make the cut.

The state now holds signed and notarized letters saying those late applicants own rifles and magazines illegally.

But rather than turn that information over to prosecutors, state officials are giving the gun owners a chance to get rid of the weapons and magazines.

So far 106 rifle owners, and 108 residents with high-capacity magazines have received letters saying that they can destroy the guns and ammunition, sell them to a federally licensed gun dealer, move the items out of state, or make arrangements to turn them over to state or local police. Those who fail to do so could face serious criminal penalties.

So we’ve been called crazy, absurd, and I’m sure many other things for thinking that gun confiscation would ever happen in America, but IT IS HERE!

There is no sitting on the bench here. I stand with the citizens in Connecticut and will be at their defense if the time comes. Will you? END ARTICLE

So what will you do? Hard decision to make, to become a "criminal" or not. Best option may be just to move, some of the gun makers are doing. I hear Texas, Arizona, Montana, and Utah are open!

So what will the State of Connecticut do with perhaps over a hundred thousand defiant gun owners

Scary times.  I hope cooler heads prevail. 

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Currency Re-Set Coming? Economic Collapse on the Horizon? Prepare with Gold and Silver

More opinion from Bob Rinear from an article called "Personal Reset Survival".   I did not include the entire article. The beginnings of it talked about governmental currency and the Fed. I thought his comments on holding Gold and Silver would be of interest to Survival Preppers even though many of you do not think holding precious metals are a high priority. I understand that most people simply cannot afford Gold - neither can I. None of us cannot afford NOT to own some precious metal and that draws us to Silver, however I hope Rinear's comments will have some of you re-think the possibility of getting some smaller weight Gold coins.

Very few people own gold. VERY few. The bankers like that. The raids they’ve done on the paper futures to drive prices down, have sent most of the “make believe” gold holders sell out and forget it. This isn’t an accident. They don’t want a lot of folks holding a lot of gold, because when the reset comes, they’ll benefit “too much” from having a big stash. They’d like it better for you to have your silly paper currency and nothing else. This is why I believe that to this day, gold and to a smaller extent silver is the single best thing you can do to help yourself through this upcoming period.

The problem for most people is simply the price. The Average guy wants to own some gold he knows it’s the right thing to do. But he can’t cough up the 1300 bucks needed to buy an ounce. This is why most people tend to go with silver. It is still cheap enough to where you can buy a pretty hefty amount for not too much money. Will silver do well? Yes I think so. I’ve said for years, that its got 70 dollars an ounce in it if not more such as 100. But it will be gold that makes the biggest move, and be the most desirable.

While silver is still used in coinage around the globe, all trade between nations concerning gold is done by LBMA certified currency grade gold. Most people don’t understand that. They think that if they have some US gold coins or Canadian maple leafs, that these are what governments would use to settle debts. This isn’t true. It all has to be smelted down, refined to 999.9 and certified by the LBMA. This is an incredible purity, done under very strict guidelines. Each step of the process is monitored and recorded. Oh and by the way, it “costs” more. One of the questions that we get a lot is “what should I buy, coins, bullion, rounds?” My answer is fairly simple. If you’re talking about silver, you want one-ounce “eagles”. They’re without doubt the single most recognized coin you could have.

But in gold, it’s a bit of a different story. With gold costing 1300 dollars an ounce, it is 1) hard for the average person to buy much of it if any at all, and 2) as far as using it as a true currency, the unit is “too big” to be practical. In other words, let’s say that all hell breaks loose, things get really ugly for a period. Well you still need to buy “stuff” whether it’s food, or fuel or an axe. What are you going to do, hand over a one ounce gold coin for some canned beans? No, that doesn’t work.

So in Gold I suggest buying the smallest recognized coins you can get. Will you pay a premium for that? You bet. Just like a pint of milk costs more per ounce than a gallon. But I’d rather pay for a “good” with a 1.10th ounce coin. So, in our way of thinking, holding silver eagles and small weight gold coins is good “survival” tactics. For holdings beyond that which you would use for emergency money, then you would consider one ounce gold coins, and bulk silver.

We do NOT buy numismatic coins as the bulk of their “value” is what someone says it’s worth, versus the metal content. That can vary too widely for us. I believe the reset is coming. I believe the Chinese are pushing for and demanding it and they carry enough weight now to make it happen. I think their push to hoard up so much gold is to try and percent back the Yuan with gold, and thus make the renminbi (the official currency) attractive enough to carry a good weighting in the new SDR’s. I think that when it happens, gold and silver will be allowed to rise to all new highs. I have to believe, having some of both is the single best thing we can do.