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Monday, June 6, 2011

Urban Survival Planning - Another Portable Solar Solution, Guide 10 Power Pack

When most people think of solar power they envision larger solar panel's on roof tops providing power to lights or refrigerators. has written several times about the need to consider alternative power sources in depth, meaning having the capability to recharge and/or power items at your Safe location and on the move.

Power requirements in a base camp setting will be much bigger than when you are on the move simply because of size constraints and time restraints.

I have several solar power options. One large, really non-manportable (unless in a vehicle) solar power system that charges deep cycle batteries for use with a power inverter so 110/115v tools can be used and small appliances such as refrigerators can be powered.

My other man-portable solar charging systems is a fairly expensive (around $1,000) kit that I can carry in a Bug Out bag or a rucksack in order to charge radio, flashlight and lantern batteries when I am on foot. recently found out about another small man-portable solar panel provider from a company called GOAL ZERO.

From their website, GOAL ZERO states they are innovators of portable solar power systems that power a variety of USB, AC and DC devices anywhere and at anytime. Providing a perfect blend of portability, power, and ease-of-use, GOAL ZERO products feature full solar energy systems -solar panels, power packs and accessories - each designed to work in concert with each other.

Guide 10 Power Pack
Guide 10 Power Pack is an Ultra-Lightweight USB solar charging system that fits in your pocket. Use as a single unit power pack to power your device or as a power source to recharge the batteries for use in AA or AAA battery powered devices. Recharge you cell phone 1-3 times per charge with the Guide 10 Power Pack. Charge up the Guide 10 Power Pack with the Nomad 7 Solar Panel in 1.5 hours or via USB in 6 hours.

The Guide 10 Power Pack consists of two components:

Guide 10 Battery Pack
- Charge AA/AAA batteries from the sun in 1.5 hrs with Nomad 7 solar panel
- Recharge your cell phone 1-3 times per charge
- Built-in LED flashlight that runs 20+ hours per charge
- Stores power for charging devices day or night
- Very small, about the size of a cell phone
- Can also charge via USB
- Includes 4 pack of AA rechargeable batteries
- AAA Battery insert available with AAA battery purchase

Nomad 7 (folding) Solar Panel
- Collect 7 watts of power from the sun
- Use solar power with USB or 12V devices
- Solar charge cell phone is 1 to 2 hours
- Protect devices with built-in pocket
- Foldable rugged design
- Weather resistant

Watch the video below to learn more about this manportable solar charging technology.

For more information contact:

Goal Zero
14864 Pony Express Road
Bluffdale, UT 84065
phone: 1.888.794.6250
web site:

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Survival Preparation - Peak Oil - Collapse Catalyst

Chris Martenson article from 27 May
Peak Oil - Why Time is Now Short

The Next Oil Shock

The only thing that could prevent another oil shock from happening before the end of 2012 would be another major economic contraction. The emerging oil data continues to tell a tale of ever-tightening supplies that will soon be exceeded by rising global demand. This time, we will not be able to blame speculators for the steep prices we experience; instead, we will have nothing to blame but geology.

Back in 2009, I wrote a pair of reports in which I calculated that we’d see another price spike in oil by 2010 or 2011, based on some assumptions about global GDP growth rates, rates of decline in existing oil fields, and new projects set to come online. Given the recent price spike in oil (Brent crude over $126, now at $115) and recent oil supply data, those predictions turned out to be quite solid (for reference, oil was trading in the low $60s at the time).

One part I whiffed on was in my prediction that the world community would have embraced the idea of Peak Oil by now and begun adjusting accordingly, but that’s not really true except in a few cases (e.g. Sweden). Perhaps things are being differently and more seriously considered behind closed doors, but out in public the dominant story line concerns reinvigorating consumer demand, not a looming liquid fuel crisis.

At any rate, with Brent crude oil having lofted over $100/bbl at the beginning of February 2011 and remained above that for four months now, we are already in the middle of a price shock.

Looking at the new data I am now ready to move my ‘Peak Oil is a statistically unavoidable fact’ event to sometime in 2012, which tightens my prediction from the prior range of 2012-2013.

The next shock will drive oil to new heights that are currently unimaginable for most. First, $200/bbl will be breached, then $300, and then more. And these are in current dollar terms; any additional dollar weakness will simply be additive to the actual quoted price. By this I mean that if oil were to trade at $200 but the dollar lost one half of its value along the way, then oil would be priced at $400.

In 2009, I wrote a special report on oil that explored the interplay between energy and the economy. At that time, the stock market was in the tank, global growth was in a freefall, and things looked gloomy. (And in regards to the masive Federal Stimulus)....these trillions and trillions of dollars, which, along with (borrowed) foreign equivalents (money), are being applied to “ease the credit crunch,” will eventually find their mark and deliver what feels like a legitimate rebound in activity. (Don't be fooled into complacency with mediocre short term stats that indicate a economic recovery).

For now, debts are defaulting faster than the various central banks and governments can inject new money and borrowing activity into the system. Banks aren’t lending because there are very few compelling loans to make, especially if future losses have to actually be carried by the bank making the loan.

But this won’t be true forever. Sooner or later, all the trillions of new dollars will trot out of the barn, begin to gallop, and then thunder off, creating the appearance of a healthy economy. (But) it will be a cruel illusion. Money is only one component of growth. As we’ve strenuously proposed, energy is a necessary prerequisite for growth.

Housing remains in a serious slump, wage-based income growth is poor, Europe remains mired in a serious debt crisis, Japan has slumped back into recession, and the US fiscal deficit is a structural nightmare. Worse, GDP growth is relatively tepid and would be negative, deeply negative, without all the deficit spending and liquidity measures.

We are driving at a high rate of speed into a box canyon,.....Peak Oil is only one of many factors.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Survival Planning - Validity of Gold/Silver in Trade or as a Currency?

Received a comment from Jack regarding the validity of Gold and Silver as a currency,..."I have been buying in small quantities, and recently I have started buying in slightly larger quantities. Like you, it is not an investment, but a lifeline. I suppose you can call them one in the same depending on the situation at hand. The question still remains, however, will people (the average merchant) recognize, when the time comes, the silver or gold round as a form of currency. I have said in the past that the average urbanite or suburbanite will continue to use 'cash' until it is depleted. Only then will they be in a pickle. Thoughts?"

UrbanMan's reply: Jack, I'm sure you recognize that nothing is predictable. After all we are patterning our survival preps on movies, books and just possible events and how we see them impacting our lives and security. Substitute food or guns for gold and silver and I think you'll agree that PM's and their potential value is just another possibility that we have to plan for.

There are a remarkable number of small stores which now trade commodities for Gold and Silver, mostly silver, and most of that being in coins of a silver melt value.

I personally think that the "currency or trade cycle" after a catastrophic collapse will be paper fiat cash, then gold and silver, then straight commodities barter, then back to Gold and Silver. The interval between each in this cycle will be drivien by several factors: dependent upon the severity and type of collapse and the strength of the dollar when it happens; time of year as this affects food availability as well as the existing availability of food at the time of the total collapse; as well as each individual you are bartering with will have their own needs....could be food, medications, fuel, etc.

I think that everyone needs to keep some cash on hand. I keep $3,000 in 5, 10 and 20 dollar denominations in one of my gun safes as I envision a time when the banks are too hard or dangerous to get to, or they are closed (banking holidays), or the withdrawal limit is something ridiculous. There will be people accepting cash, albeit at hyper prices, well after most of us realize it is worthless as these people will think the government will make everything all better - hell, the government caused all this in the first place!

I am not advocating going broke buying Gold or Silver. What I am advocating is that complete Survival Preparations also consists of cash on hand and Precious Metals, well as stocked food, guns for security, equipment, supplies and material that will be necessary to survive in a degraded society, a Bug Out or Safe location and a plan. You can add developing a survival group to that as survival is a team sport. Be safe Jack.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Survival Planning and Preparation - Utlimate Self Reliance Guide was sent an article Mr Lee Bellinger and his product which is a manual, entitled Independent Living's Ultimate Self Reliance Mega-Manual: 151 Practical Strategies for Thriving in a Shattered Economy. has no financial link with Mr Bellinger. The sole purpose of this post was to inform readers of Survival - Collapse Preparation sources of information.

Mr. Bellinger advertises:

Gas and food prices skyrocketing...

Decimated home values, withering 401(k)s...

Massive unemployment, the devaluing dollar...

Unraveling social safety net, confiscatory taxes...

Who are YOU relying on to secure your future – your financial advisor? An employer? A family member? The government? The fact is there's really no one left you can or should rely on... except yourself.

The Wall Street Journal in October stated that the implications for our future are truly frightening......"Total monetary and financial collapse of the massive government debt bubble is upon us, with devastating real-world consequences for your savings, property values, investments, and other assets."

Lee Bellinger, the founder and publisher of Independent Living, a private advisory letter for individuals who seek to become more self-reliant in these challenging and unprecedented times, has developed a 224-page, manual, called

Independent Living's Ultimate Self Reliance Mega-Manual: 151 Practical Strategies for Thriving in a Shattered Economy, which provides information on how to stock up on food, water, and fuel – a real lifesaver in case of critical shortages of these essential supplies as well as providing cutting-edge strategies for reclaiming your privacy from snoops, corporations, and government busybodies. Plus, Mr Bellinger states he is going to send anyone ordering his manual an one half ounce silver coin – to start (or add to) any holdings in precious metals.

Independent Living puts forth 10 Signs America Is Becoming a Third-World Country before Our Eyes:

Rising unemployment and poverty (both are much bleaker than official reports portray, as government statisticians routinely "cook the books").

Economic dependence (debt above 90% of GDP).

Declining civil rights (Patriot Act and other privacy stealing mandates).

Increasing political corruption (not only the criminal trials and sex scandals that make for titillating headlines, but the insidious, below-the-radar payola system that corrupts government at all levels).

Military patrolling the streets (my newsletter has detailed the hush-hush training of thousands of U.S. troops for deployment in urban America ).

Failing infrastructure (bridges, dams, oil and gas pipelines, power grid).

Disappearing middle class (massive, permanent loss of blue-collar jobs).

Devalued currency (the inevitable result of chronic deficit spending).

Controlling the media (the FCC, having effectively co-opted the major networks, is now eyeing talk radio controls and internet "neutrality").

Capital controls (preventing free markets and free people from correcting and disciplining the financial misdeeds of big government).

UrbanMan comments: Nowhere is there any proof that the U.S. Government is "patrolling our streets with the military" outside of response to natural disasters. There is on-going training in riot and crowd control tactics and techniques, however there is only conspiratorial thought on the government's intent on using military actively in this country.

I have not bought the manual and do not now if I will. However, if anyone is interested in checking this out, the links are as follows: