In October of 1347, 12 ships from the Black Sea docked at the Sicilian port of Messina. The people who were gathered on the dock were shocked to see over half the sailors laying on the decks of those ships, dead. Even though officials ordered the ships back out to sea immediately, it was too late. The Black Plague had landed and would ravage Europe over the next five years, killing over 20 million people.
The Black Plague was a bacillus, a rod shaped bacteria. Today, we’d be able to battle this plague with the antibiotic streptomycin. But in the 14th century they not only didn’t have antibiotics, they didn’t understand how bacterial diseases were spread. The people of the world were helpless in the face of the deadliest disease that had ever struck.
Even though medical science has a better understanding of the spread of disease today, there are still diseases which we are largely helpless against. Antibiotics work well against bacterial infections, but they don’t do a thing against viruses. Hundreds of millions of people become infected with influenza per year, a viral infection, with some 61,000 dying of it, yet there is no antiviral medicine to combat this common disease. The body must defeat it on its own, or die trying.
This is why vaccines are so important. Vaccines are a less virulent form of the virus, which causes the body’s immune system to develop antibodies which can defeat it. That way, if the person becomes infected with the actual virus, their bodies are ready to defeat it.
But vaccines don’t exist for all viruses. The only vaccine that has been developed for the deadly virus Ebola will kill roughly 20% of the people who it is administered to. While that’s much better odds than the 80% mortality rate of the disease, it isn’t better for the people who wouldn’t be exposed to Ebola and contract the disease. A nationwide vaccine campaign would kill millions of people who would otherwise be safe.
There is no magic solution for the risk of a pandemic. For some, the only reason why they will live is the draw of the cards. But that’s not saying we can’t stack the deck in our favor. Based on how such diseases spread, chances for survival would probably be higher in these states:
If there’s anywhere that you could survive a pandemic, it’s probably Alaska. This state has the lowest population density of any part of the United States. Even its cities are fairly small, with Anchorage, the state’s largest city, housing over 40% of the population, having a grand total of 297,832 people.
Of course, an epidemic could spread through those 300 thousand people, just as well as it could spread through the millions living in some of our largest cities. But there are a lot of people living in remote areas of Alaska, who don’t have regular contact with the outside world. If anyone is going to survive a worldwide pandemic, it’s these people. Some may not even know what happened to everyone else.
Surprisingly, the cold in Alaska won’t kill the pathogens that cause disease. It will slow them down, but it won’t kill them. It’s actually easier to kill those microscopic pathogens with heat, than with cold. But I don’t know anywhere in the country where it reaches 158°F during the day, not even in the summer.
If we want the lowest population, we need to move just a little farther south, to Wyoming. Like Alaska, there are a lot of wide open spaces in Wyoming, areas where you won’t see anyone for miles. There’s lots of game, ranching and farming to provide you with food. The biggest part of the state’s agriculture is in cattle, but the state is known for growing grains, hogs and sheep as well.
Of course, you need to pick an isolated part of the state to live in, if you want to avoid the disease. But there are plenty of those to choose from. Just avoid the cities and Yellowstone National Park, and you should be okay.
The Colorado Rockies
My personal preference is to ride out the pandemic in the Colorado Rockies. I’d avoid the eastern part of the state, even though it’s all farms. But there are plenty of places in the Rockies where you can hide out and not see anyone for days. This makes it a great bug out location for a lot of disasters.
Having spent time in the Rockies, I can attest to the hunting and fishing there. While you might end up competing with a lot of other people for the opportunity to hunt and fish, if you find an isolated enough area, you should be able to live off the land well, just like in Wyoming, Montana and Alaska.
Since I live in Texas, I feel compelled to add it to this list. But there are some good reasons to do so anyway, even though Texas has a huge population. But it’s a huge state, so that population is pretty well spread out, if you avoid the major cities.
There are places in West Texas where you can drive almost 100 miles between gas stations, let alone anything else. Of course, there’s not much water in those areas, so make sure you bring plenty along. You wouldn’t want to run out… especially in the heat of the summer.
What makes Texas really attractive as a place to ride out a pandemic, or any disaster, for that matter, is that it’s the number one ranching state in the nation. More cattle are raised in Texas, than the next two biggest cattle producing states combined (Nebraska and Kansas). While I doubt that any Texas rancher will be all that happy with you killing off their herd, you can probably come to some sort of accommodation, buying a steer from them.
Southwest – Heat and Sunlight Kill Viruses
Texas has another advantage, which it shares with its neighbors to the west. That’s lots of sunlight. Temperatures are high in states like Arizona because of all the sun they receive. That’s good, from a pandemic point of view, especially if it is a viral pandemic, like Ebola or the coronavirus. You see, sunlight, especially the ultraviolet light contained in sunlight, is deadly to viruses. So all you have to do, to keep yourself safe from infection, is to spend a lot of time outdoors, especially if you’re meeting someone.
Granted, the hot climate of the southwest is a little bit difficult for us humans to live in too, but it’s not fatal to us. We can survive it, while the viruses can’t.
Georgia – CDC
Georgia is unique in all the states, in that it is the home of the CDC, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, one of our government’s crown jewels. This research facility will be at the front lines of stopping any pandemic that occurs, regardless of where it happens. They are the ones who will be isolating and defining the organism that causes the disease, as well as developing any cure for it.
I figure that any cure will be applied there in Georgia, near where the CDC is located, in Atlanta. That’s why I’ve placed Georgia on this list. Other than that, I’d say the state isn’t ideal, as the population is too high and it’s harder to find isolated places to ride out the pandemic. But then, I know a few good old boys who have homes stuck back in some hard to get to places. Maybe I’ll pay them a visit.
Can you imagine dying from a cut on your finger or a scrape on your knee? How about a respiratory infection or a toothache?
Before the invention of penicillin, the first antibiotic, that could have been your cause of death. If SHTF, access to antibiotics may become limited or impossible. If that happens, it’s important to know how to make antibiotics at home.
To understand the importance of antibiotics, think of it in larger terms. They would have cured the bubonic plague, which was a bacterial infection that took 100 million lives in the 14th century. It was originally caused by infected rats and the fleas that had bitten them, and then bitten a person. Since it was highly contagious, after a person was infected by the rat or flea, the infection then spread from them to other people.
Antibiotics also cure tuberculosis, a highly contagious bacterial disease that still exists today. As a matter of fact, in 2014 alone, more than 9 million people were reported to have it. All bacterial infections are contagious to some degree, though for some, such as ones that cause an infected tooth or cut, the risk of infection is low because it’s mostly blood born. With other infections, such as tuberculosis, all you have to do is breathe the same air to become infected.
Though we think of the plague as something long behind us, we’re only protected from it because of access to antibiotics. If society collapses, pandemics like it could wreak the same havoc on humanity as they did then.
For thousands of years, Chinese medicine has used fungi to treat skin infections. World-wide, a common treatment for any skin lesion was a poultice made of dirt, which likely contained fungi. For thousands of years, people may not have known WHY something worked; they just knew that it did. Fortunately, we don’t have to depend on such blind faith anymore, so let’s get on with it.
Making penicillin at home is difficult, but possible if you have the right equipment and ingredients. First things first, though: don’t do it unless it’s truly a survival situation.
First, commercial antibiotics have been made by the pros, and they’re a known quantity. Second, making drugs at home, whether they’re legal or illegal, is frowned upon, and distributing them is illegal in most places.
How to Make Penicillin
This is a no-brainer, right? It’s made from bread mold, so you just leave a loaf out, cook up the mold or something, then take it, yes? Umm, no. Penicillin is made from the penicillium fungus found on foods such as some breads and fruits (a moldy cantaloupe played a huge role in initial experiments), but here’s the thing – the bacteria has to be stressed.
So, you have to grow the fungus, then introduce it to stressors before you can use it to make penicillin.
Very important heads up your culture has to be grown and cultivated in a sterile environment or else other bugs and nasties will contaminate it and cause a Frankin-culture instead of the pure penicillium culture that you need to make antibiotics.
There’s a simple but less reliable way of making penicillin, and then there are steps that you can take to ensure that your end result is penicillin. Warning: though: it’s complicated and requires chemicals that can be quite expensive and have limited shelf lives.
A gram scale
A 1-liter glass container
750 ml Erlenmeyer flask with a non-absorbent plug
A pH test kit
2 pieces of whole wheat bread
A cantaloupe rind, more bread, or citrus fruit
Step 1 – Set out the rind, bread or fruit and let it mold (we’ll call this the host). It will go through a few phases. First the mold will be white or gray, then it will turn blue, then a bright blue-green. This is the color you want. Note: if you choose to use bread, it’s best to make it yourself because many bakeries use an ingredient that inhibits mold growth.
Step 2 – Sterilize the flask by putting it in the pressure cooker at 15 lb. for at least 15 minutes, or bake it at 315 degrees F for an hour.
Step 3 – Cut the whole wheat bread (see note in step 1) into 1/2-inch cubes and place them in the flask, careful to be as sterile as you can.
Step 4 – scrape the blue-green mold from the host and place it in with the bread. Again, be as sterile with this step as you can, for instance, boil the tongs that you’re using.
Step 5 – Place the flask in a dark place that’s around 70 degrees and allow it to incubate for 5 days.
At this point, some people may say that you’re done and you can just slap the “penicillin” on the wound or make tea or soup from the bread. We don’t recommend it.
Step 6 – Now it’s going to get complicated. You’re going to need the following ingredients:
Lactose Monohydrate 44 gm
Corn Starch 25 gm
Sodium Nitrate 3 gm
Magnesium Sulfate 0.25 gm
Potassium Monophosphate 0.50 gm
Glucose Monohydrate 2.75 gm
Zinc Sulfate 0.044 gm
Manganese Sulfate 0.044 gm
Now, according to the instructions that I found (neither of which were actual medical sites because, as usual, there aren’t any actual medical sites that describe how to make anything like this at home), it says to dissolve these in tap water.
After researching, it seems that distilled water would be the best to use for the next step because we want to keep things as sterile as possible and tap water has unknown variables. That’s just my opinion and I’m definitely not a formally trained scientist, so use what you prefer.
Step 7 – So, back to it. Sterilize the 1+ liter container, then dissolve the above ingredients in 500 ml of cold water. Add more cold water to make it a full liter.
Step 8 – Use hydrochloric acid (HCL) to adjust the pH to 5.0-5.5 using your pH test kit.
Step 9 – Sterilize the container along with the solution as described above.
Step 10 – Allow the solution to cool, then add the mold. Incubate it for another 7 days under the same conditions as before. It’s important that the fluid isn’t jostled around so put it where it won’t be moved.
If you’ve done it correctly, you’re almost done. Now it’s time to extract the penicillin that’s infused in the fluid.
Step 11 – Filter the mix through a coffee filter or sterilized cheesecloth.
Step 12 – Adjust the pH of the solution to 2.2 using the HCL and the pH test kit.
Step 13 – Mix with cold ethyl acetate in the separatory funnel and shake vigorously for 30 seconds or so then allow it to separate. The ethyl acetate will be at the bottom.
Step 14 – Chill a beaker in an ice bath and drain the ethyl acetate into it. Add 1 percent potassium acetate and mix it again.
Step 15 – Let the ethyl acetate evaporate off while the solution is still in the beaker. You want plenty of air circulating through.
Step 16 – You have penicillin, assuming you did everything right. Actually the crystals that remain are potassium penicillin and potassium acetate.
This is a pretty scientific process and not something that you should undertake lightly, just to save yourself a few bucks on a prescription.
Because there are so many variables, making your own penicillin is tricky at best. Yes, you may have penicillin but you may have some bad bugs in there, too. But if SHTF, you’re dying from septicemia and you have no other viable options, then it’s not like this is going to make anything worse.
There are also many other sources of natural antibiotics that you can eat or even use topically, including honey, garlic, oil of oregano, and ginger. Honey is also a great preventive because in addition to killing something that may have gotten into the wound, it also acts as a barrier to keep other bugs out.
If you opt to use this recipe, it may be best to test it on a patch of your skin first to see if you have a reaction then go from there.
Try other natural recipes to treat you illnesses , as nature will always provide the best medicine one can have!
The winds of war are now blowing around the world. One day we will look back on these days with longing as one would look back on the gentle breezes of summer as the hurricane blows outside.
The winter season of the fourth turning is increasing with intensity as most people are fooled into believing that summer is just a few days off. When the winds become deadly and the snow begins to pile up, many will not be prepared to care for themselves. They will find themselves helpless and unprepared for this new weather system. Many will die and many more will suffer as they are cut off from the supplies and materials they depend on for normal living. They will become immobile and have little communication to tell them what to do. When the weather has them at their most vulnerable, the wolves will begin to show up at their door.
It cannot be over emphasized as to the amount of danger America is facing. We are being systematically cut off and separated from our allies and will eventually stand alone to face the fury of the hurricane that approaches. We are currently being set up to take a fall that some hope will be the end of this nation as we know it. The treason and treachery being perpetrated on this nation is a result of the mutation of the population from ants to grasshoppers. We are about to get exactly what we voted for and most people do not understand what that means.
Our birthright has been sold for a hand full of magic beans that will turn out to be rancid leftovers from someone’s failed business adventures. The wealth this nation has amassed over the decades is rapidly dwindling and will suddenly disappear in its entirety as the nation sleeps one night in the near future. The masses will awake one morning in a strange new land that holds no future for them or their children. They will be dumbstruck as to how they got there. The warnings will have been dismissed as insane talk by delusional people that don’t conform to societies norms.
It will be these few delusional, insane people that will determine the future of the once great nation. They will be the only ones that understand the dangers and are prepared to deal with the deadly winter weather. When the snow piles up they will have supplies and heat. When the wolves appear at the door they will have the weapons to fight them off. When the winds blow away the shelters of society the few will be safe in their structures reinforced to handle the tempest.
Those that deny the coming weather will be laid naked before it and will pay the price. No amount of facts or pleading will change the mind of most of these grasshoppers until it is too late.
There is a storm approaching and measures must be taken before it is too late to prepare. Just as you would prepare for a hurricane, the population must lay in stores of food and supplies to maintain their standard of living for the duration of the destruction. They must make sure they are in a safe location that will not get brown away or inundated with water from the storm surge. They must have the means to provide heat and cook food when the power system goes down. They must be able to protect themselves from any wolves that appear in any form. They must be prepared to rebuild after the storm passes. They must be prepared to weather this storm for 10 to 20 years until it blows itself out.
War is being fomented and when it comes the U.S. will be hard pressed to survive it. Our military is being downsized, weapons systems are being reduced and many senior commanders are being fired for dubious reasons at best. The civil population is being systematically impoverished while government operatives tell them the nation is strong and getting stronger. Our manufacturing base has been dismantled and over 17% of our food is imported today. We have bankers that are stealing hard assets with fiat funny money and plan to steal peoples savings with new government regulations and laws. We are on the verge of losing reserve currency status and our banking system as we know it.
We are being inundated by foreigners that seek government entitlements and refuse to assimilate the American culture or language further dividing the civil population into domestic tribes hostile to one another. We have terrorist training camps within our borders and a lack of border control. We have members of the Muslim Brotherhood in the highest levels of our government and leaders that are ignorant at best and treasonous at worst.
In 1996 Thomas Chittum wrote a book called Civil War Two where he describes the breakup of America into ethnic regions. Many of the things he wrote about are evident today in society and spell doom for this nation as it is, even if we were not threatened with world war we would be headed for balkanization. The increasingly dysfunctional nature of this nation as it is will provide its citizens with many difficulties to overcome in the coming years.
War is coming to the world and to America on many levels and it cannot be stopped. The best anyone can do is to prepare and try to stay out of the way of the most serious fighting and bide their time until they can get the upper hand in their locality. The world is about to change in a very radical way and many are not prepared for it either physically or mentally. The forecast has been given and the storm flags are up.
When the experts can’t agree, it’s clear that there’s a problem. When they can’t agree about something as deadly as the coronavirus, we’re all in danger. Yet that’s the very situation we face. Top experts are delivering varied prognostications about the killer virus, ranging all the way from “less serious than the flu” to “we’re only seeing the tip of the iceberg”.
In all fairness to those experts, they really haven’t had much time to study this new disease. Many of those top experts are scrambling wildly to understand the virus, what parameters it can survive under and how it spreads. That’s usually the work of years and they’ve only had a few weeks to work at it.
Nevertheless, that lack of information just makes the coronavirus more dangerous to the rest of us. Without accurate information, we have to assume the worst, just like the doctors who are studying it do. That means a virus which is transmitted by “air” (actually by aerosol – droplets expelled from coughs and sneezes) and has a high mortality rate.
As of this writing, the coronavirus pandemic is still marching around the globe, with a total of over 60,000 confirmed cases in 28 countries. Of the 52,793 current active cases, only 15% (8,117) are considered serious or critical. But the more telling number is the closed cases, of which there are 7,604 individual people; 6,235 of them recovered and were discharged from the hospital and 1,369 resulted in the patient dying.
Officially, the fatality rate of coronavirus is listed at a meager 2%. But that figure is known to be incorrect. The problem is, it’s too early to make an actual determination. If we divide the number of deaths to date, by the total resolved cases, we get a mortality rate of 21%; but that’s not accurate either. Typically, the mortality rate of a pandemic is higher in the earlier days, with the survivor rate increasing towards the end.
But here’s the really scary statistic: the transmission rate is listed as a 3, with different studies giving answers anywhere from 1.4 and 4.0. If that number was less than 1, we could count on the epidemic burning itself out. But the higher the number, the more it will take to cause it to burn out.
Even if we take the best case figure, from the various studies, this pandemic is not going to burn out on its own. Something is going to have to happen, to make that happen, the question is what. And while we’re at it, what do we need to do in order to protect ourselves and our families? The world is an open book in terms of transportation, economy and immigration. This also means it’s open to disease as well.
There can be an overwhelming number of items to consider when preparing for a pandemic. This is particularly true for those who have little medical knowledge. It may all seem foreign. To combat this confusion, I thought it necessary that we break up our preps into three very distinct categories.
Treating a Pandemic Within the Home
Plastic Sheeting is one of the most important items to have an abundance of. It can do things as simple as separate a few rooms to becoming a way to safely transport those who have died from the pandemic. The sheeting can also be used to cover windows and doors, if the pandemic gets out of hand. Have at least 200’ for all your needs.
Disposable Foot Protection
N95 Respirator Masks
Face Shields or eye protection
Tyvek Disposable Coveralls offer great body protection.
Both Crystalline Vitamin C and cone flower (echinacea) will give you an option to boost the immune system. These two are critical in assuring your ability to stave off the disease, as well as fight it off once it’s attacking you.
Water Storage will be crucial and you will want to have at least 1.5 gallons per person per day. This water will play a massive role in the hydration of those who become sick.
Hydration Powder will add a little oomph to your water through things like electrolytes. You may not have an IV on hand, but that doesn’t mean you cannot stay hydrated properly.
100 Contractor Trash Bags
100 Indoor Trash Bags
Cans with Tight Fitting Lids
Plenty Antibacterial Soap for hand washing
Quality Bodily Fluids Cleanup Kit (SUPER SORB)
Hardback copy of serious medical volumes like The Lost Book of Herbal Remedies, The Survival Medicine Handbook, The Doomsday Book of Medicine.
Pandemic Protection Outside the Home
There are items that you can include for protection outside the home on a daily basis. These items would not be part of your EDC or everyday carry, but would be better suited in something like a get home bag.
One of the most important pieces to have in that bag when prepping for a Pandemic is the N95 respirator. These are not very expensive and will protect your nose and throat from pathogens.
You will also want some basic meds stored in your car as well. These meds should be for dealing with symptoms. Meds that will fight fever, diarrhea and something for sore throat would all be great options. A non-drowsy medication for congestion would also help.
A basic trauma kit will also be vital. Remember that pathogens can enter your body through any damage in your skin or any orifice. If you are cut during a pandemic, it will be crucial that you clean and cover that cut ASAP.
Ideally, these items get you home as quickly as possible where you can survive a little more safely without the germs of the outside world.
Three Considerations for Pandemic Security
Unfortunately, even while people may be suffering from disease inside your home, you will still have others who want to get into your home to get what they need. This is particularly true for areas that are densely populated. They will be looking for meds, food and water. They will likely have people who are sick in their own lives. It’s a terrible thing to think about.
Still, if your family is safe within your home, the last thing you want is someone from the outside tracking germs inside. You must stay vigilant and try to stop threats at the doors or windows of your home. Being proactive in this method could save those in your home.
The Attack Drone is a dual-purpose technology that acts as eyes outside the home, as well as a deterrent for those who want to come on to your property. This battery powered quad-copter will not fly for very long, but you will only need to give chase once. Outfit your drone with some lightweight sharpened metals or even something that looks like a taser. This is an intimidation method more than anything else.
A Perimeter Alarm will help you understand when someone has ventured too close. This will allow you some lead time so the threat does not come barreling through the front door or bashing through a window. Be sure the alarm runs of simple batteries and have a plan to change them after a while.
Any threat must be dealt with as quickly as possible. You do not want an infected person touching you or getting into your home. This is not time for a wrestling match. Be sure you have an effective firearm that will stop someone, even in light body armor, from getting into your home.
Basic preps will still be necessary in conjunction with these preps, which are more specific to the pandemic. Always start with a great base that you can build on.
Communism hit center stage with the Russian revolution, as first Vladimir Lenin and then Joseph Stalin remade Russia into the image created by Karl Marx. This didn’t affect us here in the USA much until World War II, when we were uncomfortable allies with Russia. Even then, there were those who saw communism as being the political savior for all mankind. But it wasn’t until World War II ended and the Cold War began, that we clearly saw the juxtaposition of capitalism versus communism in the world.
Ever since then, there have been those in this county who have been pushing for us to become one more socialist country in the world. They hold up socialism as the shining light, where all people are treated equally. The government exists only to make sure that happens.
But even then, there is an elite in any communist government. Someone has to make the decisions about who gets what and those people always take care of themselves first. While socialism or even communism might be a great theory, it requires perfect people; and the world has always had a shortage of those.
Yet there are those in our political system, who still proclaim socialism as the way to go. They make it sound better by calling it “democratic socialism.” But all it takes is a look at other countries who have gone socialist to see what that means; you can vote it in, but you can’t vote it out.
Nevertheless, they try to make their political ideology look good by promising lots of freebies, not letting people know that they are going to have to pay exorbitant taxes to get those freebies. Rather, they claim that the rich, who don’t pay “their fair share” will pay them. Yet every time politicians talk about raising taxes on the rich, it is the middle class who feels the pinch, not the wealthy.
To the low-information voter, especially the low-income, low-information voter, this all sounds good. They get free health care, free birth control, free education, free phones, free food and free income, and someone else has to pay for it. What could be better?
Interestingly enough, over the last century, every socialist or communist government has gotten into power by proclaiming their concern for the poor. This gave them a large pool of low-information voters they could count on, so that they could get voted into office. They lied to their followers regularly, both about their own intentions and those of the opposing party. All that mattered was that they got into power. We could be seeing the same thing happening here.
So, is the United States on its way to becoming a communist country, as some would like?
As I look back over the last 50 years, I can see where we Americans have lost a lot of our freedoms. Every time the government expands, taking over another part of society, it does so at the cost of individual and state freedom. It doesn’t matter if we’re talking about the IRS or the EPA; they get their power by stealing our freedom.
In that sense, you can say that we are already on the road towards communism and have been so for quite some time. A major step towards getting us there was Obama’s signature healthcare law. Never intended to work, the Unaffordable Healthcare Act was merely supposed to be a stepping stone towards a single-payer healthcare system, which would allow the federal government to take full control of 17.9% of our economy.
Basically all that Obamacare has done for the country is raise the cost of health insurance and medical care. Yes, it did give some people who were previously denied health insurance coverage by insurance companies the legal right to buy insurance. Yet that could have been done at a much lower cost and without having to hire 30,000 new IRS agents, further bloating an already oppressive government agency, in the process.
Even regulatory agencies like the Department of Education can be seen to be pushing our country towards socialism and then communism. These agencies do nothing more than take the power to make decisions out of the hands of US citizens and our local governments. One of their main ways of doing this is by controlling tax dollars. Money passed out to state and local governments by these agencies always comes with a price; one of toeing the line on some regulation or other.
Part of the problem here is that once a government agency is established, it is all but impossible to shut it down. Take the EPA for example. It can be fairly argued that there was a need for the EPA, when it was founded by President Nixon in 1970. But since then, the majority of the work that the EPA originally did has been taken over by state governments, leaving the bloated federal bureaucracy in place to spend taxpayer money and create stifling regulations.
The new House of Representatives seems to be making a greater push for the government to take over other parts of our economy as well. Some representatives have even gone so far as to float the idea of taking over major corporations, “for the good of the people.” Should this actually happen, it will be the sign that our country is actively being taken over by a communistic government.
If we keep doing that, we’re going to find ourselves backed into a corner; actually several corners. The first corner will be the elimination of our First Amendment freedom of speech. The “PC Police” are already at work on this, using “political correctness” and “hate speech” to silence those who don’t agree with them.
Totalitarian authority can’t handle disagreement, so they have to criminalize that disagreement in order to silence it. Everyone will be forced to toe the party line, saying what they’re supposed to say, as if they believe it. They won’t be satisfied with us being quiet, but rather insist that we say things their way.
Once they’ve accomplished that, it will be easier for them to take the next big roadblock to communism out of the way, our Second Amendment rights. Totalitarian governments must always disarm the people, so that they can keep control. As Mao Zedong, the first communist leader of China said, “political power grows out of the barrel of a gun.”
Without guns, what can any of us do to stop anything the government wants to do? The Second Amendment was given to us for this purpose. If those in power are going to get the power that they want, they have to take it out of our hands. That’s why the gun grabbers always attacks the AR-15 rifle, rather than pistols or shotguns. You can’t fight a war with pistols; you need rifles for that. As long as we are armed with rifles, we are a danger to the totalitarian communist government they crave.
The real question boils down to what we are going to do when they come for our freedom of speech and our freedom to bear arms?
Two things make our society massively more vulnerable to what we term bio-risks – anything from deliberately introduced lethal diseases to the results of random mutation of regular viruses and bacteria already in our environments.
But to start with, here’s an interesting fact. Most diseases don’t like to kill too many people too fast, because they rely on living people for their own survival – as a host to live in, and as a means of passing on their offspring. If a disease kills too many people, too quickly, they end up harming themselves as well. So evolution tends to moderate the lethality of most diseases.
Furthermore, in places where there are common diseases, the people develop some resistance to those diseases, meaning the people and the diseases can co-exist in a balanced situation. That is why we Americans have to take anti-malarial precautions when traveling somewhere rife with malaria for example, even though the local people are living quite comfortably alongside malaria.
But – and here’s the catch. Changes in our lifestyles have occurred faster than diseases can evolve to keep up with us. The two key changes, below, in particular, mean that diseases that once posed moderate risks now can pose massively greater risks.
The population is More Densely Crowded
In our modern world, if someone coughs onto a door handle, 100 people might touch that same door handle in less than an hour. If someone sneezes on a bus or train or plane, the germs carry instantly to 20 or 30 people within a dozen feet of them.
When people lived in rural areas, what happened in one homestead or one small town rarely impacted much beyond that because people weren’t crowded together for much of every day. A person would get sick, and stay at home, and their family would largely stay close around them, with only limited interactions with other households. And if they did travel somewhere, they’d probably be traveling by horse or open carriage, not infecting hundreds of fellow travelers as they did so.
Non-farm employment was typically in small businesses rather than huge office complexes. There were no such things as shopping malls with thousands of people going in and out of them every day.
The ability of a disease to pass from person to person, within a local area, was much more restricted than now.
People – and Things – Travel Further, Faster, and More Often
The ability of a disease to travel long-distance was even more constrained, 100 and 200 years ago. 100 years ago the fastest method of transportation was the train (at about 40 mph) or boat (less than 20 mph); and 200 years ago, it was the horse at perhaps 10 mph or a boat at 5 mph or less. In other words, infected people would simply die before they got too far out of their home area (or, perhaps, recover – either outcome meaning the disease was no longer being passed on).
Today we have planes that can fly nonstop, halfway around the world, in less than a day.
The person next to you on the bus might have just flown in from a faraway country yesterday, bringing who knows what foreign disease with him.
Or, in the airport, on your way from San Francisco to Chicago, you pass a person who has just landed from London, and who was seated next to someone from Ghana. He caught an infection from the Ghanaian (who continues to infect more people on his travels), and the man you met is now about to infect people in San Francisco, including you at the airport, and you’re about to now go to Chicago and continue the spread of the disease, infecting someone on your flight to Chicago who travels on to New York, and so on and so on. Give it a day or two, and the disease is everywhere that has an airport.
It isn’t just people who travel. So to do things. Much of the food you eat has come from hundreds or thousands of miles away. As we sometimes find out to our cost, contaminated meat from one packing plant can impact on people all across the country. Unwashed lettuce containing a dangerous hazard might start its journey in another country, and fan out all across the country, infecting people semi-randomly across the US.
A crate packed full of clothing made in South East Asian and airfreighted here might also have one or two dangerous disease-bearing insects that escape into the greater Los Angeles area upon arrival at LAX.
In the past, people obviously didn’t travel as much, and they also traveled more slowly, meaning that by the time they came down with a disease, they had not had a chance to get far from home, limiting the disease’s spread accordingly.
To return to our earlier malaria example, 100 and 200 years ago, malaria was not a problem outside its prime areas of existence, because people and mosquitos with the disease didn’t travel far away from the prime malarial regions. But today, a mosquito or a person can be in one part of the world in the morning and many thousands of miles away by the evening.
Diseases which are not crippling risks to the local acclimated population can become lethal when suddenly introduced to a different population with no built-in resistance.
We Are Less Disease Resistant To Start With
Some credible studies have suggested that our clean healthy lives are actually weakening our immune systems.
When children used to literally eat worms and dirt at the bottom of their garden, when food wasn’t always thoroughly cooked or safely stored, when children would regularly fall over and get cuts and scrapes, people exercised their immune systems and built up a more resilient and healthy system in general. Exercise, healthy living and healthy food with fewer chemicals and additives all helped too.
Today we have so cocooned ourselves in cleanliness that trivial infections can become more serious. But – not to worry, because we nowadays have sophisticated antibiotics to protect us from most bacterial infections, right?
We Are Destroying Our AntiBiotic Effectiveness
Alas, no. Doctors are colossally over-prescribing antibiotics, partially due to pressure from anxious patients (and their anxious parents) and are sometimes now prescribing them even for non-bacterial infections, even though they are useless for such things.
Why do doctors do this? Two reasons. First, liability. The doctor reason ‘Well, the illness is probably not bacterial, but maybe it could be, or maybe there will be a secondary infection that might arise, and if I don’t prescribe the antibiotic, I might subsequently be sued; it costs me nothing to write the prescription, so why not’.
Second, in response to pressure from their patients. Few doctors develop the close relationship that family doctors formerly had with their patients. They have become the slaves of their productivity studies; they don’t even have their own friendly warm consulting room.
Instead, they flit from room to room, where their patient is waiting for them, already having been prepared, vital signs checked, history recorded, by nurses and nurse assistants. Rather than asking the patient what the problem is, and chatting with them to elicit more information and to relax and build a rapport and trust while doing things such as taking temperature and blood pressure, they read the notes on the computer, then start diagnosing and prescribing almost without interacting with the patient at all.
The former 20+ minute patient visit is now more like 5 minutes.
So in their rush to complete their consultation, it is easy to accede to a patient request, and there is always the hope that the placebo effect may assist the patient, even if the antibiotic itself doesn’t.
The next part of this problem is that patients often don’t take the antibiotic as directed. As soon as they start to feel better, they stop taking the antibiotic, particularly if the antibiotic has or threatens to have any type of side effects. This is a very dangerous thing to do because at this point there are still some bacteria in the patient – hardy bacteria who are slower to die from the antibiotic. If the poisonous antibiotic stops attacking them, these resistant bacteria recover and become more resistant for next time and next time.
Furthermore, there are so many antibiotics being prescribed – and for animals as well as people (not because the animals are sick, but to make them grow faster) – that much of the water and ground is now contaminated with low levels of antibiotics, which allow for bacteria to become acclimated to the antibiotics and develop resistance to them.
The result is the appearance of increasingly resistant bacteria.
How Many Times Can We Win at Russian Roulette?
Remember SARS? Swine Flu? Bird Flu? These – and many other viruses that don’t get such prominent news billing – all credibly threatened to become global pandemics. In each case, the threat did not become a reality, but it was not due to any particular clever/appropriate response by society. It was due to good luck and the viruses are not quite as lethal/infectious as initially thought.
But the viruses continue to mutate. The good thing about mutations is that 98% or more of all mutations create weaker rather than stronger viruses. But some small percentage of mutations create more lethal and/or more infectious viruses.
With our society the way it is now, the conditions are ideal for a lethal infectious virus to spread like wildfire, across the entire world. It doesn’t only have to be an influenza type virus. It could as likely be an antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
Good luck has meant this has not happened to date, but as soon as our lucky streak ends, we will be in for a life-changing event.
The Effects of a Pandemic Today Would be Greater than Ever Before
Our vulnerability today in the event of a pandemic is much greater than ever before.
The last major pandemic was the Spanish Flu of 1918-1919. Back then, continents were linked by slow ship rather than fast plane, and only about one person in five lived in a city. Most of the population were in low-density rural areas, and each city dweller (who did not make his own food) had as many as five rural residents who could make food for him.
Life, back then, was ‘low intensity’. Electricity was a convenience, but not integrated into every part of our lives. Wireless radios were just starting to come out. Television didn’t exist (and at the risk of amazing our younger readers, neither did the internet, either).
In this low-intensity world, it is estimated that 25% of the US population came down with the Spanish flu, and 10% of those who caught the flu died from it. What would the numbers be like today, in our much higher intensity world?
Initially, governments were slow to acknowledge the Spanish flu and the danger it posed and preferred to refer to the pandemic as ‘only the flu’ so as to prevent panic. But, whether ‘only the flu’, or not, social disruptions became increasingly extreme. Restrictions were placed on public gatherings (including funerals and even store sales) and on travel. In San Francisco and San Diego, it became compulsory to wear gauze masks in public, and one town made shaking hands illegal.
Desperate shortages of health care professionals existed, and similar shortages affected other service industries – in some cities, there were not enough phone operators to allow for normal phone service. There were also shortages of coffins, morticians, and grave-diggers, such that mass graves were dug by steam shovel and dead bodies buried en masse.
To put the impact of this flu outbreak in another context, 25 million people have died of AIDS in the first 25 years of this disease. In comparison, 25 million people died of flu (in a world with a much smaller population) in 25 weeks (many more died in total, over a longer period).
Now think about what would happen today. And instead of a shortage of phone operators, maybe there’ll be a shortage of public works employees. We might lose our water or our power or our sewer services.
These days we have many fewer hospital beds than we had then because people spend much less time in hospitals and fewer healthcare workers in general. We have less ‘surge capacity’ to accommodate a massive outbreak of anything – we don’t have the hospital beds, or the hospital space of any type, or the healthcare workers, or the medical supplies needed to manage a sudden outbreak affecting maybe 50 – 100 million Americans.
And those restrictions on public gatherings and store sales? What happens if you can’t go to buy more food for a week? For that matter, what happens if 25% of the people who deliver food to the stores are off sick, and 25% of the people who prepare the food are also off sick, and so on?
Does a 25% reduction in manpower means a 25% reduction in services, or a lesser amount – or, perhaps, a much greater amount? Does a 25% reduction in police means a 25% rise in crime or a doubling in crime?
Talking about the reduction in the police, it is probably the police would also need to be retasked to all sorts of additional duties, and just as we’ve seen in past rioting events (eg Los Angeles in 1992)
The other new dimension of our ugly world today is the potential for terrorists to release some form of bio-attack into our communities. Anthrax, botulism, or any of dozens of less well-known but equally deadly evils could be seeded into a small part of our country and then be quickly spread around the country by unknowingly infected individuals.
By the time the authorities worked out what was happening, and decided on what to do about it, much of the country would already be compromised. There comes a point when the concept of quarantining no longer makes sense because most of the country would have to be in the quarantine zone!
Unfortunately, all the amazing new tools and knowledge of geneticists and biotechnologists can be used for evil as well as for good. The totally lax security concerns of researchers who develop dangerous strains of germs and who like to share them with each other, while making good sense in a benevolent world and enhancing the sharing of knowledge and research, are incredibly dangerous and alarming when one of the people receiving the shared knowledge and the lethal research strain of some bug is someone keen to use the knowledge for evil rather than honorable purposes.
Creating and inserting pandemic-causing diseases into our society is dismayingly easy, and does not require nearly the degree of technology and visible infrastructure that is required for developing or delivering nuclear weapons.
Preparing for Bio-Doom
In terms of duration, a pandemic will probably be a Level 2 event. The Spanish flu attacked the US in three major waves, spanning a good twelve months. This was in part due to the movement of troops from Europe back to the US at the end of World War 1, and in part just due to natural factors.
New pandemics will spread at a faster rate, for sure, and might, therefore, last less time in total (but also might extend on at least as long). The impact on society is unclear, and maybe mild or might be severe – in other words, can you survive in place, or do you need to bug out to your retreat?
The end of the epidemic will occur when one of two things occurs. One possibility is when population densities have reduced to a point where it is no longer being readily transmitted, and where the remaining people will either be survivors who now have immunity after their earlier infection or naturally resistant people who are not susceptible to the disease to start with.
The other possibility is that our medical scientists will come up with vaccination or cure for the ailment, enabling people to quickly terminate any infection. This is the medical equivalent of a ‘Hail Mary’ pass, however. The lead-times required to first come up with a solution to a new threat, and then to develop enough of the drug that resolves the problem, could be way over a year or more.
Needless to say, it would be very nice to have the option to bug out if possible when confronted by a pandemic. It is a bit harder to decide when you should do this, though – on the other hand, the good news is that the lack of an obvious defining event means that the entire population of your city region won’t all take to the freeways to evacuate the city simultaneously.
Clearly, you need to keep apprised of the latest bio-risks and the Pandemic ratings given by WHO and CDC to any new threats. At some point prior to being surrounded by a pandemic and probably infected yourself, you’ll need to shut off contact with the outside world and let the pandemic pass you by.
If there is no threat of social disorder, it probably makes sense to stay where you are. But if the threat of social disorder starts to increase, and if your normal residence starts to lose essential services such as water and power, then you might want to consider making an orderly departure and moving to your retreat.
During the period of ambiguity as to if an outbreak will become a pandemic or not, you’ll want to become very careful at controlling your exposure to germs. Washing your hands becomes essential prior to any potential transfer of germs from anything to your hands and then on to anything that could end up in your mouth or nose or eyes. And gently reducing the time you spend in concentrated crowds of other people is a good thing to do, too.
In 1940 you could buy a nice cape cod style home for around $2,500. Someone entering the job market likely started out at $25 a week. A 1940 Buick with a straight 8 would run you $895 and up.
Why this stroll down memory lane? Because it is meant to show how much inflation has changed the price of things. When we still used money that was based on gold and silver, inflation was kept in check to some degree. Fractional reserve banking and excessive credit creation have distorted the value of things we depend on for life and we are coming to the end of that failed experiment. All of our recent prosperity has been paid for with our ability to print dollars out of thin air.
If you want to know where we are being led you only have to stroll down any city street where the homeless live, or you can look through the many pictures of the great depression. The American people are being systematically impoverished and it is being done knowingly by those in charge and is allowed by a dumbed down, apathetic public too busy staring at their iphone to notice.
If this nation is to survive and retain a reasonable standard of living and quality of life, we will have to downsize to a level that we can actually afford. We will need to forego the 2,000 sq. ft. $300,000 homes we all like so much and settle for a more affordable 900 sq. ft. $30,000 home we can actually pay for. We will have to give up the $40,000 autos coming out of Detroit now and settle for a smaller inexpensive model that can actually get 60 mpg.
We will also need to return to a financial system that is based on real value. This being gold and silver money. If we try to use anything else we are simply trying to fool ourselves. You cannot use a currency that does not act as a store of wealth over the long term.
We can do this by choice and salvage what is left of our country or we can continue on the current path and end up an impoverished country with a dictator in charge like most other failed nations in the world.
If we want to continue having a country worth living in we need to go back to what we know works and try to build up from there. We no longer have sufficient manufacturing capacity to employ all of the people in this country and any kind of welfare will not work without debasing the currency.
This will necessitate 20% of the population going back to living on small farms to insure they have a job and sufficient resources to care for their families. Nothing else in our current situation will work. We have too many unemployed people living off of the state and this will end soon. We will either have a mass exodus from the country or a mass extinction within it. As unpleasant as it sounds that is our future if we do not make substantial changes while we still have time. That time is nearly up.
Downsizing our lives and our wants will be a necessary change if we want to salvage something of our future. We have lived too long in fantasy land and now we must come back to reality. The west line has moved and we will never get back all of the production jobs we once had. We must accept that and accept that our country will be less productive and less prosperous in the future and learn to live within our means.