All posts for the month October, 2013

Halloween is upon us!

In addition to the fun parties, the trick or treating, haunted houses and costumes, it can be a dangerous time of the year as well.

Take a quick second to read through these tips, and make sure that you and your family are out of harm’s way this Halloween.

The 21 Halloween Safety Tips

Without further ado, here they are:

  1. Swords, knives and other costume accessories should be soft and flexible to avoid injury.
  2. Don’t trick or treat alone–go in groups.
  3. Use reflective tape on costumes or bags to help drivers see you.
  4. Examine treats for choking hazards and tampering.
  5. Take a flashlight trick-or-treating and walk house to house, don’t run!
  6. Test makeup in small area or skin and don’t get too close to the eyes.
  7. Use crosswalks, and look both ways when crossing a street.
  8. Lower the risk for eye injury by not wearing decorative contact lenses.
  9. Walk on sidewalks or far edge of the road if there isn’t one.
  10. Make sure masks and costumes don’t obstruct vision.
  11. Avoid eating homemade treats from strangers.
  12. Never go in the house of someone you don’t already know!
  13. Check the list of registered sex offenders in your zip code and make sure children don’t trick or treat near any.
  14. Be a cautious drive on Halloween. Go slowly. Especially around corners and in residential areas.
  15. Teach children how to call 9-1-1 for REAL emergencies.
  16. Have small children draw on pumpkins instead of carving them. Then you can carve around after.
  17. Use a flashlight or glow stick inside pumpkins to reduce the risk of fire.
  18. Candlelit pumpkins should be on a flat surface, away from anything flammable.
  19. Check outdoor lights and replace burned out bulbs.
  20. Wet leaves or snow should be removed from sidewalks and steps.
  21. Restrain pets from jumping on or biting trick or treaters.

There you go. 21 tips to help keep you smiling. Hope you enjoy yourself this Halloween and have a safe time! – The Daily Prep

Prep On,



These tips were taken from advice given by the CDC and The American Academy of Pediatrics. Visit their sites for more tips like these!


By Paul Craig Roberts

To inform people is hard slugging.  Everything is lined up against the public being informed, or the policymakers for that matter. News is contaminated by its service to special interests and hidden agendas. Many scientists or their employers are dependent on federal money. Even psychologists and anthropologists were roped into the government’s torture and occupation programs. Economists tell lies for corporations and Wall Street.  Plant and soil scientists tell lies for agribusiness and Monsanto. Truth tellers are slandered and persecuted. However, persistence can eventually win out. In the long-run, truth sometimes emerges.  But not always. And not always in time.

I have been trying to inform the American people, economists, and policymakers for more than a decade about the adverse impacts of jobs offshoring on the US economy. The word has eventually gotten out. Last week I was contacted by 8th grade students competing for their school in CSPAN’s StudentCam Documentary Contest.  They want to interview me on the subject of jobs offshoring for their documentary film.

America is a strange place. Here are eighth graders far ahead of the economics profession, the President, the Congress, the Federal Reserve, Wall Street, and the financial press in their understanding of one of the fundamental problems of the US economy.  Yet, people say the public schools are failing.  Obviously, not the one whose students contacted me.

Is it too late?  I know much, but not all.  So this is not the final word.  I think it might be too late.  When skilled jobs are sent abroad, the skills disappear at home. So do the supply chains and the businesses associated with the skills. Things close down, and abilities are lost.  Why take a major in college for a job that is offshored. A culture disappears.

But we can start them back up, right?  Perhaps not. When a First World country exports its technology and know-how abroad to a Third World country in order to benefit from lower cost labor, how does the First World country get the work back?  Living standards and the cost of living in Third World countries are much lower than in First World countries. The populations of First World countries cannot pay their mortgages, car payments, student loans, medical care, and grocery bills with the wages of Third World countries.

When First World wages drop, mortgage, car, credit card, and student loan payments do not drop. Americans cannot live on Chinese, Indian, and Indonesian wages. Once the technology and know-how is transferred, the low wage country has the advantage in the absence of tariff protection.

For America to revive, our economy would have to be walled off with high tariffs, and subsidies would have to be provided in order to recreate US industry and manufacturing. But many corporations now produce offshore, and America is broke. The government has been  $1 trillion dollars in the hole each year for the last 5 years.

Jobs offshoring diminished the US tax base. When a job is sent abroad, so is that job’s contribution to US GDP and tax base. When millions of jobs are sent abroad, US GDP and tax base cannot support government spending levels. To the extent that there are any replacement jobs, they are in lowly paid domestic services, such as waitresses, bartenders, retail clerks, and hospital orderlies. These jobs do not provide a tax base or consumer spending power comparable to manufacturing jobs and tradable professional services such as software engineering and information technology.

Republicans and increasingly Democrats, as both parties are dependent on the same sources of campaign contributions, blame “entitlements.”  By entitlements they mean welfare.

In fact, entitlements consist of Social Security and Medicare.  Entitlements are funded by the payroll tax, approximately 15% of payroll.  The fact that a person pays the payroll tax all his working life is why the person is entitled to Social Security and Medicare if they live to retirement age. Welfare, such as food stamps and housing subsidies, are a small part of the federal budget and are not entitlements.

Ever since President Reagan was betrayed three decades ago by Alan Greenspan and David Stockman, both of whom sold out to Wall Street and raised the Social Security payroll tax above what was needed to pay Social Security benefits in order to protect Wall Street’s stock and bond portfolios from exaggerated deficit fears, Social Security payroll tax revenues have exceeded Social Security payments.  As of today, Social Security revenues exceed payments to beneficiaries by an accumulated $2 trillion.  The money was used by the federal government to pay for its wars and other spending programs. The Social Security Trust Fund holds non-marketable IOUs from the Treasury. These IOUs can only be made good from an excess of tax revenues over expenditures or by the Treasury selling $2 trillion in bonds, notes, and bills and paying off its IOUs to the Social Security Trust Fund. This is not going to happen.

The Federal Reserve could not care less about the US population. The Fed was established for the purpose of protecting and aiding banks.  Currently, the Fed, as if America were a Banana Republic which America appears to be becoming, is printing one thousand billion dollars per year in order to support the banks and to finance the federal deficit.

This is bad news for Americans, as it means that their fiat money is being created at a far greater rate than the demand for the dollar.  The implication for our future is a drop in the dollar’s value.  As there are no jobs, a drop in the dollar’s value means high inflation on top of unemployment and double the misery of the Great Depression.

As bad as this is, it is minor compared to the destruction of the planet’s environment. Online information shows that the Gulf of Mexico ecosystem is in crisis after the BP spill and use of Corexit, a dispersant used to hide, not clean up, the spilled oil. [1]

The Fukushima catastrophe has hardly begun.  Yet already the radioactive water pouring into the Pacific Ocean has made fish dangerous to eat unless a person is willing to accept a higher risk of cancer.

Fukushima has the potential of making Japan uninhabitable and of polluting the air, water, and soil of the US with radioactivity.  Yet the crisis is seldom mentioned in the US media. In Japan the government just passed a law that could be used to imprison Japanese journalists who report truthfully on the dire situation.

Take the time to familiarize yourself with the online information about Fukushima.. According to the presstitute media, Americans face threats from Iran and Syria and from whistleblowers such as Edward Snowden.  The real threats are simply not in the news.

If you search Fukushima, you will find information that the presstitute media hides from you. See for example, [2]

There are a number of other threats to the environment on which our lives depend. One is the effort to extract more productivity from the soil by use of GMOs. Monsanto has altered the genes of several crops so that the crops can be sprayed with RoundUp to eliminate weeds. The results have been to deplete the soil of nutrients, to destroy the micro-biology of the soil so that new plant diseases and funguses are activated, and to produce superweeds that require heavier doses of the glyphosate in RoundUp. The heavier dose of RoundUp worsens the aforementioned problems.  US agricultural soil is losing its potency.

Now we come to chemtrails, branded another “conspiracy theory.” [3]  However, the US government’s efforts to geo-engineer weather as a military weapon and as a preventative of global warming appear to be real. The DARPA  and HAARP programs are well known and are discussed publicly by scientists. See, for example, [4]  Search Chemtrails, and you will find much information that is kept from you. See, for example, [5] and [6]

Some describe chemtrails as a plot by the New World Order, the Rothchilds, the Bilderbergers, or the Masons, to wipe out the “useless eaters.”  Given the amount of evil that exists in the world, these conspiracy theories might not be as farfetched as they sound.

However, I do not know that.  What does seem to be possibly true is that the scientific experiments to modify and control weather are having adverse real world consequences.  The claim that aluminum is being sprayed into the atmosphere and when it comes to earth is destroying the ability of soil to be productive might not be imaginary. Those concerned about chemtrails say that weather control experiments have deprived the western United States of rainfall, while sending the rain to the east where there have been hurricane level deluges and floods.

In the West, sparse rainfall and lightning storms without rain are resulting in forests drying out and burning down. Deforestation adversely affects the environment in many ways, including the process of photosynthesis by which trees convert carbon dioxide into oxygen. The massive loss of forests means more carbon dioxide and less oxygen. Watershed and species habitat are lost, and spreading aridity further depletes ground and surface water. If these results are the consequences of weather modification experiments, the experiments should be stopped.

In North Georgia where I spend some summers, during 2013 it rained for 60 consecutive days, not all day, but every day, and some days the rainfall was 12 inches–hurricane level–and roads were washed out. I received last summer 4 automated telephone warnings from local counties not to drive and not to attempt to drive through accumulations of water on the highways.

One consequence of the excess of water in the East is that this year there are no acorns in North Georgia. Zilch, zero, nada.  Nothing. There is no food for the deer, the turkeys, the bear, the rodents. Starving deer will strip bark from the trees. Bears will be unable to hibernate or will be able only to partially hibernate, forced to seek food from garbage.  Black bears are already invading homes in search of food.

Unusual drought in the West and unusual flood in the East could be coincidental or they could be consequences of weather modification experiments.

The US, along with most of the world, already had a water problem prior to possible disruptions of rainfall by geo-engineering. In his book, Elixir, Brian Fagan tells the story of humankind’s mostly unsuccessful struggle with water. Both groundwater and surface water are vanishing. The water needs of large cities, such as Los Angeles and Phoenix, and the irrigation farming that depends on the Ogallala aquifer are unsustainable. Fagan reminds us that “the world’s supply of freshwater is finite,” just like the rest of nature’s resources. Avoiding cataclysm requires long-range thinking, but humanity is focused on immediate needs. Long-range thinking is limited to finding another water source to deplete. Cities and agriculture have turned eyes to the Great Lakes.

Los Angeles exists because the city was able to steal water from hundreds of miles away. The city drained Owens Lake, leaving a huge salt flat in its place, drained the Owens Valley aquifer, and diverted the Owens River to LA via aqueduct.  Farming and ranching in the Owens Valley collapsed. Today LA takes water from the Colorado River, which originates in Wyoming and Colorado, and from Lake Perris 440 miles away.

Water depletion is not just an American problem. Fagan reports that “underground aquifers in many places are shrinking so rapidly that NASA satellites are detecting changes in the earth’s gravity.”

If the government is experimenting with weather engineering, scientists are playing God when they have no idea of the consequences.  It is a tendency of scientists to become absorbed by the ability to experiment and to ignore unintended consequences.

Readers have asked me to write about Fukushima and chemtrails because they trust me to tell them the truth. The problem is that I am not qualified to write about these matters with anything approaching the same confidence that I bring to economic, war and police state matters.

The only advice I can give is that when you hear the presstitute media smear a concern or explanation as “conspiracy theory,”  have a closer look.  The divergence between what is happening and what you are told is so vast that it pays to be suspicious, cynical even, of what “your” government and “your” presstitute media tell you. The chances are high that it is a lie. – Paul Craig Roberts



Winter weather conditions can vary quite a bit depending on the region you live in, from constant rain and sleet to thick blankets of snow and black ice. Then, sometimes it just gets plain cold, with little rain or snow, but perhaps some wind chill to drop things down to below zero. In any case, winter can bring some harsh weather in its wake, but you can prepare for it so that you and your family aren’t caught by surprise. Clothing Proper clothing is essential when you’re preparing for winter weather. In a region where the temperature regularly drops to below zero, layers of clothing including long underwear, sweaters and insulated jackets are strongly recommended. For quick and easy access, each member of the family should have a complete set of warm winter clothes (including good shoes and a jacket, if possible) stored in a bag in a designated area.

Don’t forget your head and feet, either; you lose a lot of body heat from the top of your head and the soles of your feet, so wear a warm hat and some comfortable, warm socks. By contrast, if you live in an area that experiences cold but extremely rainy winters without much snow or ice, you’ll need adequately waterproofed clothes, jackets and shoes particularly.

Keeping Warm A lot of people take central heating for granted, but if the power goes out or you find yourself stranded in the cold and away from home (say your car broke down), you’ll need to stay warm. Proper clothing will go a long way toward keeping you warm, especially if you dress in layers, but you can also carry instant heat pads (usually good for a few hours) or matches, a lighter, and/or a small firesteel or flint and striker for starting a fire. When the power goes out at home, if your home has a fireplace, you can keep your family and home warm with a fire.

In a post-SHTF scenario, or if the power were to go down for an extended period of time, a fire can also allow you to heat beds, cook food, and heat water for bathing. Traditionally, a bed warmer was a specially designed pan that would be filled with hot coals and inserted between the sheets or under the mattress in order to warm or dry out the bed, today you can use a hot water bottle or a rubber bladder for the same purpose. In some countries, hot potatoes were also placed inside the pockets of travelers to help keep them warm over long distances.

Car Preps winter_car_kitKeep your car prepared for winter by topping up oil, fuel, antifreeze and brake fluid levels. A good pair of winter tires is also highly advisable, especially in regions that are subject to snow or heavy rain. In areas that experience heavy snow, keep chains for your tires stored in your car. Since a winter storm may strand you under a variety of conditions, you may also wish to keep a small quantity of cash stored in your vehicle for use in an emergency.

You can also keep a bag or two of cat litter or sand in the trunk of your car; if your vehicle gets snowed in or stuck, cat litter or sand can be poured around the tire to help it gain traction. Also, don’t forget some rock salt or another suitable de-icing agent if ice is a known risk.

Avoid traveling during heavy storms whenever possible, but always keep emergency supplies stored in your vehicle. Such emergency supplies should include water, something to eat, suitable warm clothes including gloves, a small shovel, road flares, a blanket or emergency space blanket, and a small medical kit, preferably with some form of instant-heating pack.

Home Preps It may not cross your mind at first, especially if you rent a home or an apartment, but winter-proofing your residence can help immensely. To prepare your home or apartment for winter, you can check the glass and seal up any drafts around windows or doors that will let cold air in.Storm glass or double-paned windows can provide additional insulation from the cold, while some cultures will hang heavy tapestries, rugs or animal skins on their walls for added insulation. A well-insulated or winter-proofed house can also save you money on your heating bill.

Power Outages Assuming you don’t have a backup power source, be prepared for power outages during the winter by stocking up on plenty of batteries, candles, matches and lighters, as well as firewood if you have a fireplace. A wood burning stove can be particularly useful if you have a power outage, since you can heat a substantial portion of your home while also cooking your meals or heating water for drinking and other uses. Another good item to have on hand is a decent emergency radio, battery powered and tuned to the local weather station for updates and news.

If you have no method of cooking your food during a power outage, be sure to have a well-stocked supply of non-perishable foods. Think along the lines of energy bars, powdered milk, cereal, trail mix, dried fruits, nuts, juice mix, and dried meat like jerky. Propane and charcoal can be used to cook outdoors, but should not be used inside as they are both fire hazards and potential sources of carbon monoxide, an odorless, deadly gas.

Stock Up Pay attention to local weather reports during the winter, especially if you live in an area known to experience extreme winter weather. Meteorology may not be an exact science, but if a storm with a 200 mile radius is heading your way, it may be prudent to stock up and hunker down. Keep your kitchen and pantry well-stocked during the winter months, so that when a heavy storm comes through you don’t have to worry about getting things from the store.

Make sure you have plenty of food and other necessities for your pets, as well. You should also keep a stock of at least 2 weeks’ worth of any medications that you or a family member needs.

Bugging Out Honestly, bugging out during winter is a pretty bleak prospect under most conditions. Still, if you’re faced with circumstances where you must bug out during winter, you can try to make the best of it. To start with, don’t attempt to bug out in the middle of a storm. You’re better off hunkering down wherever you can in order to wait out the storm. If you must travel during a storm, try to wait for clear periods and breaks in the weather. Keep a shovel on hand in your home, and preferably also in your vehicle, so that if you get snowed in you can dig your way out. – Survivopedia


A 6.3-magnitude earthquake has struck eastern Taiwan, the same area that rain associated with Typhoon Krosa will soon impact.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) reports the earthquake occurred at 8:02 p.m. CST Thursday (8:02 a.m. EDT) about 28 miles south-southwest of Hualian, Taiwan. Hualian is home to roughly 350,000 people.

There are no immediate reports of deaths or serious damage, according to the Associated Press.

The weather was dry at the time of the earthquake but will deteriorate through Friday for cleanup and rescue efforts.

Steady rain, associated with Typhoon Krosa, will spread across the epicenter and eastern Taiwan by daybreak Friday (local time) and will continue through Friday. Spottier showers will follow for Friday night and the weekend.

RELATED: Taiwan Weather Center Typhoon Krosa Battering Luzon, Targets Vietnam Next Detailed Weather for Hualian, Taiwan

The USGS estimates that the earthquake produced severe shaking at the epicenter, which is home to approximately 30,000 people. Such shaking is capable of causing moderate to heavy damage to structures.

Hualian likely experienced strong shaking, according to the USGS, which could have caused light damage to resistant structures and moderate damage to vulnerable structures.

Moderate shaking, capable of causing very light damage, has been reported near the capital of Taipei. The Associated Press reports that buildings in the capital swayed for more than 10 seconds and residents ducked for cover.

A deadly 6.2-magnitude earthquake occurred in Taiwan as recently as June 2, 2013. The epicenter of this earthquake was near Buli in central Taiwan.

This is a breaking news event, and will continue to update this story as more information becomes available. – AccuWeather


By Ken Jorgustin

The next ‘Carrington event’ will send the world to pitch black as we are plunged into darkness as the power grids fail – wiping out much of humanity.

Sound like science fiction? Think again. There is apparently a one in eight chance that it could happen within 10 years…

Think about this scenario, and what you would do…

…if you had just boarded an airplane and the pilot came on the intercom and said, “Ladies and gentlemen, I just want you all to know that we have a 1 in 8 chance of crashing during this flight”. Would you feel inclined to get off that airplane before it took off?

The example just given is 100-percent analogous to a real world scenario that could play out in our lifetimes, an event that would surely end the lives of countless humans on this planet. A paper published back in February 2012 in the journal “Space Weather” estimated the chance of having a repeat of 1859 (the Carrington Event) and came up with a 12% chance of it happening in the next 10 years.

According to space physicist Peter Riley and others who have reported on the subject, we should not be sticking our heads in the sand ignoring this very real possibility. A hundred years ago it would have been fairly unlikely for an event like this to cause tremendous wide spread catastrophe. Today however, the modern world relies and depends upon electricity for survival. Nearly everyone depends on a fully functional infrastructure to bring their food, goods, and services.

By the way, long story short… the 1859 Carrington Event was a massive solar storm, which if it were to occur today would in all probability cause most of the electrical power grid to fail – burning out countless thousands of transformers, which would take up to several years to replace in entirety. In the mean time, some say that up to 90% of ‘modern’ civilization could or would die. Ladies and gentlemen, this is not a joke. It is a sobering possibility, and one that should not be taken lightly.

Not only would the grid-down situation be catastrophic to our supply chains and distribution, but to make matters worse, factor in the possibility of hundreds of nuclear power plants running out of backup generator fuel before the plants have time to completely undergo a cold shutdown. Surely, some will successfully shut down, but all of them? Probably not.

According to Mike Hapgood, (space weather scientist at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, England), says that massive solar storms have happened before and another one is likely to occur soon. “The world is still not prepared for a truly damaging solar storm”.

In the modern world, we use electricity for so many things. We require electrical power to pump water into people’s houses and to pump the sewage away. [You can imagine] what could happen if the sewage systems aren’t pumping stuff away.

If you don’t have power, you can’t pump fuel into vehicles. If you don’t have any fuel, traffic could come to a standstill.

Most of the time you’re using credit cards, debit cards or you’ll be getting money out of an ATM. If you’ve lost the power, the computers in the bank that keep track of our money will have back-up power, but not the ATMs or the machines in the shops. So if you had a big power outage, it wouldn’t be long before we’d be trying to find cash.

LA Times, Space Weather Expert Has Ominous Forecast

Although a solar storm disaster is not imminent, the odds do exist, even though arguably not fully understood. It’s something that I prefer to err on the side of caution with regards to preparedness rather than to go willingly into the night and accept the consequences of possible death if it were to come to pass.

What can we do about it?

We can’t stop it, but we can become more prepared in general. An event like this would be completely catastrophic and survival would require a high degree of the right and successful preparedness, and living in a location which is more favorable for long term survival.

The solution is not a simple one. It will require a great deal of diligence on your part to discover what you need to do. In short, it’s changing your way of life to a lifestyle of self-sufficiency, and in this case it would be a lifestyle without electricity from the power grid. Your main initial issues will be food, water, and security. It would be a life of much hardship to say the least.

You may browse our website for more insight, and there are many other survival preparedness websites and blogs out there at your fingertips. Get started, today…

Krosa has strengthened into a Typhoon Wednesday afternoon, EDT, and the storm looks to continue strengthening as it tracks west-northwestward toward northern Luzon.

Conditions will deteriorate on Thursday across the northern Philippines as Krosa approaches from the east. Krosa will make landfall over far northern Luzon Thursday night, local time, as typhoon.

Satellite image of Krosa on Wednesday, courtesy of NOAA.

As a result, damaging wind gusts of over 150 kph are expected across northern Luzon, well north of the capital city of Manila and other highly populated areas, along with a dangerous storm surge along the eastern and northern coasts. The heaviest rainfall will also be north of Manila.

According to Meteorologist Eric Wanenchak, “125-250 mm (5-10 inches) of rainfall is expected across northern Luzon later Thursday into Friday as Krosa passes over the area from east to west.” This amount of rainfall will produce flooding problems and potential mudslides.

RELATED: Philippines Weather AccuWeather Hurricane Center Philippines Temperature Maps

The interaction with Luzon will likely weaken Krosa as it moves into the South China Sea on Friday. Environmental conditions will allow another round of strengthening, and Krosa could again become a typhoon over the open South China Sea by late Friday or Saturday.

Satellite image of Krosa approaching the Philippines on Wednesday, courtesy of UW-CIMSS.

Krosa will continue to track generally westward over the South China Sea which will result in the tropical system approaching Hainan Island on Sunday. Higher wind shear combined with land interaction will result in a weakening Krosa as it approaches Hainan.

Still flooding rainfall and mudslides will be a potential impact from Krosa before it weakens further and drifts toward northern Vietnam.


By Daisy Luther

Will your teen behave like…well, a teen…when the SHTF?

I watched the National Geographic show American Blackout on Sunday night with a friend.  This part in particular got us thinking about the psychology of teenagers and young adults.

Let’s be realistic about teenagers.

If you have one, know one, or have been one, you know that they are a breed apart.  Most of this is a mixture of biology and psychology, and it affects different kids to different degrees.

Some merely find their parents to be rather embarrassing, others think mom and dad are complete idiots, and then you have teens who are outright rebels.

If your child attends a public school, watches television, hangs out with other kids, or has any exposure to popular culture whatsoever, you can be assured that society is trying to create kinder, gentler children, aka sheep who will be easily led to slaughter.  They are taught to fear the very word “gun” through the ridiculous zero tolerance policies, like the one at a Texas school which recently punished a student for wearing a t-shirt with a Bible verse and the words, “God, Guns, Country” on the sleeve, because it might “incite fear” among the students.

Furthermore, those of us with a liberty mindset spend a great deal of time teaching our kids to be critical thinkers and not to blindly follow orders just because someone is an “authority figure.”  We teach them to stand up for what they believe is right, regardless of the consequences.

When the SHTF, that “think for yourself” mentality can be a real Catch-22 that can backfire, as is illustrated in the clip above.  Later in the program, the young man snuck into the food supply and gave away rations to the neighbors under the cover of darkness.  This resulted in an armed attack on the compound by the same people to whom he was dispensing charity.

Now, in all fairness, the boy in the clip is the daughter’s boyfriend and was not raised by the prepping dad. However, can’t you easily imagine an idealistic young person intent on “doing right thing” taking a similar action?

Instilling the Preparedness Mindset in Young People

This is why it is so very vital to teach the preparedness mindset to the young people in your life. It isn’t enough merely to tell them WHAT they should do.  The nature of the beast – ummm…I mean teenager…is that you must also impress upon them why you should take these actions.

This requires a great deal of attention to consequences and to the study of disaster and unrest scenarios.  There is another fine line to draw here – you don’t want to terrify your child, but you must impress upon them that during an unusual scenario, unprepared people behave in predictable ways.  The media tries very hard to downplay these predictable behaviours, but incident after incident has shown us that when disaster strikes, you can anticipate  the reactions of hungry and frightened people.

Some of you may have raised ideal teens who are completely in line with everything you say, and I salute you for this and would love to hear how you’ve accomplished this feat.  In my own parental experience, though,  as wonderful, intelligent, beloved, and well-adapted as my daughters are, this has not been a perfectly smooth journey. Between hormonal surges, the psyche’s struggle for separation from the parent, the traumatic and shocking death of a parent, and the yearning for independence, sometimes our own home has been like a cross between the floor of Congress and a post-disaster looting party.

Despite this carnival of fun, we can’t lock them safely away from the world and slide food through an opening in the door until they reach an age where their judgement is unimpaired by all that is teendom.  It falls upon us to teach our kids:

  • The importance of secrecy regarding preparedness supplies, bug out locations, and prepping in general (OPSEC)
  • How and when you can safely help others
  • How to assess a disaster situation and predict the next move of the unprepared people that may be around you
  • How to get home or to a designated meeting place if they are away from home with the SHTF
  • How to deal with the most likely disasters in your area
  • Mob psychology in the event that they are with a large group of people or in a public place when disaster strikes
  • Basic survival skills like finding safe water to drink, foraging for food, using a compass, and self defense

Here are some teaching methods that seem to work well with my girls:

Watch current events unfold together.  When Hurricane Sandy struck one year ago, we watched the events on different news sites on the internet.  We saw the terror in people’s faces, heard about their hunger, discussed the fact that folks were urinating and defecating in the stairwells of their apartment buildings, and then “toured” the devastation the day after.  We witnessed the unprepared shoving each other and fighting over a jerrycan of gasoline and saw them standing in line for hours to receive nothing more than an MRE and a tepid bottle of water.  This opened up a lot of discussions about why we do what we do in this household, as well as talks about how some of the problems we were watching could be solved with some simple critical thought.

Involve them in preparedness.  Take them with you for a fun-filled day at the LDS Cannery.  (Okay, bribe them if you have to!)  Teach them to garden or can.  Find ways to share your off-beat skills with your kids by zeroing in on the things they most enjoy, like target practice or caring for livestock.

Discuss the mob mentality every time you see it happen.  This is one of the best ways to emphasize the importance of OPSEC.  By watching people riot and pillage through the city streets in the aftermath of a disaster, you can clearly illustrate the thin veneer of civilization.  When the EBT cards failed a couple of weeks ago, I happened to be at the grocery store with my youngest daughter. We watched as a woman harangued the cashier relentlessly when her card didn’t work, and then stormed out of the store when I said something in the young man’s defense.  Her cart joined a dozen others which had been angrily abandoned, shoved into a display of salsa and and sending some glass jars to shatter on the ground.

Practice your prepping skills.  Center your recreational activities around learning handy skills.  Go camping, hiking, or orienteering. Learn to wildcraft and forage for food.  Teach your kids needlework and other crafts.  Let them have their own patch of garden for which they are responsible.  Have a “lights out” weekend to drill for off-grid scenarios. Go to the range for target practice. Learn archery and martial arts. Play laser tag and paintball.

Find apocalyptic movies, books, and television shows.  Even fictionalized depictions of societal breakdowns can really help to illustrate what happens when disasters occur. American Blackout, although unrealistic in places, opened up several discussions with my youngest daughter. Shows like , The Walking Dead, and Revolution, books like Lights Out and One Second After, or movies like The Grey, Red DawnContagion, World War Z, and 2012 can open the door to some very interesting conversations and concepts. Actually watching the dramatic events occur, complete with characters to whom you can relate, even when it’s occurring fictionally, can make it more real to your youngster.  This has the added benefit of proving that maybe Mom and Dad aren’t quite as crazy as the teen squad may have thought.

Ask them to predict what they think will happen.  When some startling event occurs, even one on the other side of the world, be sure to ask your teen’s opinion on the matter.  For example, when the Fukushima disaster struck, we spent time researching ways to protect ourselves from radiation and discussing how much better it would be if people could stay in their homes drinking their stored water and eating their stockpiled food instead of standing out in the open air, waiting in line to get something to eat and drink.  Talk about safety in those events and ask what they would do to stay safe if they happened to be present during such an occurrence.

Find examples of when failed OPSEC caused problems.  Like in the episode of American Blackout cited above, the boy broke OPSEC and let the neighbors know that the family had stores of food that they were not willing to share.  There are many events in which someone tries to help, only to become a target for desperate and unscrupulous people.

Communication, as you can see, is the key to all of these tactics.  Make it entertaining and interesting, and be sure to always ask their opinions.  Even if their theories on how to deal with a problem are not the same that you would suggest, be careful not to shoot them down – instead, go deeper into the discussion and point out the pros as well as the cons.

How have you mentally prepared your teenagers to be an asset instead of a risk? Please share your ideas in the comments below. – The Organic Prepper