Homesteading and Survivalism

Living a simple life



Two Birds, One Shot: My First Turkey Hunt in South Dakota
Foul Your Gun Barrels!
Savage Markets New Long Range Rifle
Watch: Safety, Maps, and Backpacking
Heckler & Koch Introduces Subcompact VP9SK

Breaking News Update: ATF Reversal Letter To SB Tactical
Breaking News: ATF Reverses Its Stance On Shouldering Stabilizing Braces
12 ga Precision Gun Works armor piercing slug
Browning Adds New Black Label 1911-380 Pistols
POTD: Tikka T3x TAC A1 vs. Ruger Precision Rifle

Victorinox Swiss Army Climber II Pocket Knife

I have been carrying a Victorinox Swiss Army knife on and off for close to 20 years. What can you say about a quality product that preforms just as it should? Besides my Gerber multi-tool, my Swiss Army knife is my go-to knife for hiking, camping or backpacking.

A couple of years ago I bought two Swiss Army Climber II knives – 1 for my 14 year old daughter and 1 for my 16 year old son. We go camping, hiking, fishing, backpacking and hunting, and I wanted my kids to have a reliable pocket knife to take with them.

During the spring and summer we go out on the river fishing and camping, during the winter we are hunting. Regardless of what we were doing, or where we were at, I wanted my kids to have a reliable knife that they could use.

The knife had to be compact, good quality and from a reputable brand name. The Climber II fits that bill perfectly. Its small enough to fit in a pants pocket, and the blades are long enough for everyday use.

The Climber II is just what you might expect from Victorinox, you get a quality product and at a price that will not break the bank.

Do you own a Victorinox Swiss Army knife? If so, what do you think about it?

Would you recommend a Victorinox to your friends and family?

We Are a Nation Divided

The shooting in Aurora Colorado and the following anti-gun feeding frenzy, has made it clear we are a divided nation. We are not only divided on gun ownership, we are also divided racially, demographically, financially, and through ideology.

When the blacks were freed, instead of treating them as people with rights, the whites continued to look for ways to oppress blacks. Even though slavery was abolished in the 1860s, their rights were not affirmed until the 1960s with the civil rights movement.

“Why” were we, and still are, divided on race? Why cant we as humans and as Americans put racial tensions aside and just get along?

Then we have the illegal immigrant population.

Then we have groups who refuse to incorporate into society.

Then we have the inner city gangs, poverty and drug users.

What would someone from inner city New York know about a coyote raiding a farmers chicken coop in a rural area?

We are divided demographically, financially, racially, and through ideology.

What Is The Best Livestock For SHTF

Prepping for SHTF is a never ending process. Unless money is not an issue, chances are people have to divide their efforts between various projects.

Over the past few weeks I have been posting about what my project for 2013 should be. Should it be rabbits, honey bees, both, or maybe even something else?

The question from there needs to be, what project is going to provide my family with the greatest return on our investment?

Which farm animals are the best able to live off the land, have the best food to output ratio, produce the most food for the amount of room they take up.

Cattle: Lets start with the one farm animal that everyone knows in one way or another. Most people eat cheese, butter, steaks, brisket, hamburger,,,, and so on.
The cow is a universally recognized farm animal, but what is it really good for during a long term SHTF situation?

If you butcher a 1,000 pound cow, then you have to have a way to preserve the meat. Do you have a smoker, and a pressure cooker large enough to process a whole cow?

During the middle ages, cows were not a preferred livestock. Which was mainly because they are so large it takes great effort to preserve the meat.

Cows can produce a lot of milk, which in turn is used to make butter and cheese.

Then there is the amount of grazing field a cow requires. If you want a herd of cattle, do you have the room to take care of them? Do you have a fenced in field large enough to left the cattle graze? Do you have a barn large enough so the cattle can be protected from bad weather?

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What Are We Leaving To Future Generations

As survivalist, what lessons should we be teaching our children? Should we conserve resources, or do we live in a disposable society?

While my wife (Kristy) and I were doing some shopping a couple of weeks ago, Kristy picked me up a breakfast bowl of eggs, turkey sausage and potatoes. The bowl had something like 240 calories, and was microwave ready.

Instructions said to take the bowl out of the package, poke a couple of holes in the plastic wrap, then microwave for 2 minutes.

For something that had been kept in the freezer, the potatoes, eggs and cheese tasted ok. Fresh eggs taste a whole lot better.

As I was getting ready to throw the bowl away, I asked myself if I should wash the bowl out and keep it? The bowl was something like 3 – 4 inches across and maybe 2 inches deep. This would have made a perfect breakfast bowl for the grandkids.

I ended up throwing the bowl away. Now that plastic bowl will probably sit in a landfill for 10,000 years,,, depending on what kind of plastic it was made out of.

I imagine someone 60 years ago would have loved to have that bowl. A family during the great depression could have sold the bowl to make some money.

Our comfortable, domesticated lifestyle has allowed humanity to raise the bar for what we regard as trash. Since the bar is higher, we are throwing away more now then ever before.

In the 1970s and the early 1980s softdrinks were sold in glass bottles. The bottles could be returned to the store for a nickle. This return policy promoted recycling.

In the late 1980s and into the 1990s those same bottles turned to plastic. As a result our landfills are filling up with more and more trash.

There was a comment in the Book of Eli that should sound a warning for future generations, “people kill for what we threw away.” Meaning people in the future might kill for what throw away today.

What kind of world are we leaving our kids, grandkids, great grandkids,,,,? What will those mountainous landfills of today be like in 1,000 years?

For the several thousand years mankind has marveled at the monuments past generations have built – Rome, Pyramids of Egypt, Machu Picchu, Great Wall of China,,, and so on.

What are we leaving future generations to marvel at? Nuclear waste dumps, mountains of landfill trash, polluted rivers, Chernobyl and Fujiyama are a few examples.

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Rabbits or Bee Hive

A couple of weeks ago I posted an article – Long Term Survival Project for 2013. I that article we talked about some of my previous projects, and that I was thinking about rabbits as my 2013 project.

After putting a lot of thought in rabbits, I think building some bee hives would be a better idea.

Why would honey bees be a better project then rabbits?  Both have their good and bad qualities, so lets talk about them.

Rabbits produce manure that can be used as fertilizer.  But on the flip side, you have to feed rabbits.

Bees produce honey.  You do not have to feed bees.  You have to supply the colony with sugar water until the hive gets established. Once the hive is established, it is self-supportive.

Honey can be stored forever.

Rabbits die.

You have to have a cage for rabbits.

You have to have a bee hive for honey bees.

Rabbit makes a better meal then honey.

Honey can be used as an antibiotic.

Honey is an excellent barter item.

Rabbits are a good barter item.

Honey and rabbits are both universally recognized as food.

The bee hive can be raided by predators.

The rabbit coop can be raided by predators.

Rabbits are substitutable to mosquito-borne infections.

Long Term Goal

My long term goal is to have both rabbits and honey bees. So I might work on both projects during 2013. Neither project is going to take a “lot” of time or resources. So why not try to do both next year?

Readers of this blog, what do yall think?

If I work on the bee hive I am going to build a top bar bee hive.

I Wants Me Some Welfare

I am sick and tired of supporting people who are too lazy, or too stupid to get a job.  Why should I work a 40 hour a week job, pay child support, pay for health care, barely scrap by,,, when people on welfare get all kinds of free stuff.

I want me some free food.

I want me some free housing.

I want someone to help me pay my electric bill.

I want the state to pay for my kids health care.

Right now I pay close a little over $600 a month for health care and temporary disability insurance.

I have been working since 1984, and what do I have to show for it?  Not too much.  I may not make a lot of money, but shouldn’t I be able to keep a good percentage of what I earn?

Health insurance alone takes a HUGE bite out of my pay check.  Instead of helping the working class out, taxes and health care cost continue to skyrocket.  I have not received a cost of living raise in something like 5 years.  During that 5 years prices continue to spiral out of control.

You want to know what the problem is?  I was raised with this little thing called a work ethic.  A work ethic is this concept that I believe I should support myself and my family.

Up until around the 1990s there was a stigma that went along with being on welfare.

Today, it seems that people are proud to be on welfare.  I gots me some welfare and food stamps,,,, and people see no issue with that.

Welfare is a form of stealing.  The government takes from those that do, and gives to those that do not.  Too lazy to work?  No problem, here is your housing voucher, cell phone, and food stamps.

I am pissed off that this welfare nation reelected obama.  It seems that very few people care about the greater good.  Who in their right mind would vote for welfare reform if they are on welfare.  The more people on welfare, the better chance the democrats have of being reelected.

Democrats – welfare for everyone

Republicans – how are we going to pay for this

Democrats – we will just tax the rich,,, I mean the middle class

Republicans and Democrats – maybe the federal reserve can print more money?  Yay, more money to spend,,,,,,.

Sooner or later that “printing more money” has to be paid back.  Why is going to be paying the bill?  Not the people on welfare because they aint got no job.

By reelecting obama, special interest groups screwed the working middle class up the ass.  One day this house of cards is going to come crashing down.

When the house of cards does come crashing down, there is going to be hell to pay.

Changing Demographics of the United States

On election day, November 6, 2012 it became clear the voting demographics of the United States has changed. White working class, heterosexual, conservative, are no longer the majority. We are still out here, but we no longer hold the majority of the vote.

Instead of white conservatives holding the majority, a collection of special interest groups and liberals hold the majority.

How did obama win the election? Because he won the votes of liberals, blacks, hispanics, and gays. People are no longer unified behind a common idea. Instead, we are divided along racial, religious, ideology and economic lines.

People no longer vote for what is best for the nation, they vote for their special interest groups.

Hispanics

Why did obama win the hispanic vote? Because he talked about giving millions of illegal immigrants amnesty. A family member of an illegal immigrant voted for his cousin to stay in the nation, and that is why obama won the hispanic vote. Lets not worry about the fact that illegals are breaking the law.

If someone wants to become a US citizen, let them start by following our laws.

We can not blame someone for wishing to better their lives, and the lives of their children.

But if someone breaks our laws, then we can blame them for their willful neglect.  Illegal immigrants willfully break our laws.

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The Goebbels Experiment

The Goebbels Experiment is a reading of the diaries kept by Joseph Goebbels from 1924 to 1945.

Release date: 2005
Run Time: 108 minutes
Narrated by: Kenneth Branagh
On Netflix: Yes
Director: Lutz Hachmeister

Its one thing to read history that has been written by the victors, its another thing to read it from the people that were there.

The Goebbels Experiment is an amazing film that provides insight to the workings of German life and the Nazi party.

I had hoped Joseph Goebbels would explain why the Jews were exterminated during world War II. There were a couple of comments that stated “the jews do not respond to kindness”, and the “jews are parasites.” Besides that there was no in-depth explanation as to why the jews were hated by the German people.

There was no explanation as to why Germany invaded France.

There was no explanation as to why Germany attacked England.

There was no explanation as to why Germany attacked Russia.

In the mid-1930s Joseph Goebbels says that peace must be maintained. If war broke out, that it would affect the entire world.

By the early 1940s Joseph Goebbels was promoting total war on Russia.

What happened between the mid-1030s to the early 1940s that caused a change of heart?

How could a man that says he loves his children call for a total war against his enemies? For someone that was supposed to love his children, why did Goebbels have his children murdered?

It ok to declare total war on Russia and call for its total destruction, but Goebbels was not ready to accept the fate Hitler had condemned upon others?

A couple of issues came out during the movie, Joseph Goebbels battled depression and questioned his self-worth, which most of us also deal with.

Goebbels has some harsh words for jews, but then again he seemed to have harsh words for a lot of people. He mentions deporting jews from Berlin, but there is no mention of the concentration camps or exterminating the jews.

At around 53:00 into the movie, there is mention of a jewish book called “murder in devose” (not sure of the spelling). Joseph Goebbels says the following about the book – “a nasty jewish effort that could turn you into an anti-semite if you were not not already one. This jewish plague needs to be eradicated.”

As of yet I have not been able to find the book Goebbels was referring to. What “exactly” about the book was so offensive?

If one can get past the hatred for nazis that has been instilled upon us, The Goebbels Experiment is insightful, to say the least.

Hobbies For Survivalist

So you are sitting around the house, nothing is on TV, no new or exciting news on the internet,,,,, what do you do?

You could always play some Skyrim or Left 4 Dead 2. But Left 4 Dead 2 is getting old.

What hobbies can survivalist get into that will help improve our long term SHTF survival skills?

Coin Collecting

Most of us handle money in shape for or fashion just about everyday. Why not get into coin collecting so you can start stockpiling silver and other valuable coins?

Silver and gold have been recognized as being valuable for thousands of years. At one time the US dollar was backed by gold, but now its just backed by a promise. If that promise ever falls through it would be good to have some kind of money that has a real physical value.

Ever though they are getting very rare, from time to time I find a pre-1965 quarter in my change. When I find silver coins they go into storage.

Years ago I used to take my kids down to a pawn shop in Orange Texas to buy them silver dollars and half-dollars.  I was trying to teach my children the value of real money.  Times change, things change, we moved away from Bridge City and Jasper Texas.  The local pawn shops around here do not sell silver coins.

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Rural Homestead after TEOTWAWKI

SHTF / TEOTWAWKI has happened, whether it was a financial collapse, nuclear war, widespread civil unrest,,,, something has happened to has disrupted society as we know it.

If you live on a homestead in a rural location, what might be some of the supplies you would need, and what would be some of the hardships you would face?

As I write this article I am just thinking out load. Lets brainstorm and get some ideas for discussion.

We all know the typical topics such as safe drinking water and food. In this article lets move past those topics that should be a given. What are the things that would make everyday life possible? What do we use in our everyday lives today that we would need after SHTF / TEOTWAWKI?

Breakfast

Bowl of fresh eggsLets wake up, do our morning routine then eat breakfast. What are going to be eating for breakfast? Chances are its going to be oats we have stored in mylar bags and eggs.

To have eggs we have to make sure our chickens are safe from predators and the elements. Given the chance predators such as foxs, opossums, coyotes and even other people will steal your livestock.

Exposed to wind, rain, ice and snow your chickens will die.

What do we need to keep our chickens safe and comfortable?  We need a chicken coop and a way to repair the coop.  This means we need hand tools, staples, hardware cloth, hammers, a good saw, wire cutters, tar to fix holes in the roof of the coop,,, and so on.

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Morrowind/Skyrim Theme Piano Violin Medley

For you Morrowwind and Skyrim fans out there, I found this video on youtube posted by ViolinTay and thought I would post it here.

I bought skyrim a couple of months ago while Steam had it on sale.

For those of you that have never heard of / or played Skyrim, here is some game footage.

Skyrim is one of the most epic games to have been released in the past decade.

Surviving SHTF

Chickens in the chicken coopFor the sake of discussion lets say that some kind of long term SHTF situation has happened.  Whether it was civil unrest, meteor strike, financial collapse, nuclear war, outbreak of new disease,,, lets talk about what you and your family are going to need to survive.

Just about everyone knows about the food, water and shelter of survival.  But how many people put a lot of thought into the details?  In reality, how your food, water and shelter preps look for a long term SHTF survival situation?

If you want to see society break down, disrupt the supply of water, electricity and food.

Water

Without safe drinking water, life as we know it can not exist.  Contaminated drinking water is one of the fastest way to spread disease.  Once dysentery sets in, without modern day antibiotics, its just a matter of time.

To ensure my family has a source of safe drinking water, my wife and I are investing into family sized water filters. Just a few days ago I received a couple of Berkey replacement filters from Safecastle.  Each filter provides an estimated 3,000 gallons of safe drinking water.  Four filters should provide an estimated 12,000 gallons of safe drinking water.  The plans are to buy a couple of ceramic filters to go with the black filters.  I would like to have enough filters to be able to filter an estimated 20,000 gallons of water.

In addition to a Berkey water filter, I also have a SteriPEN Sidewinder.

The Sidewinder uses UV light to kill any pathogens that may slip through the water filter.

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Why dont girls play football

When I was growing up, no girls played football. In fact, I do not remember girls playing any kind of sports, much less mixed sex sports.

I was always told girls could not keep up with boys when it came to physical sports. This video changed my mind.

Holy crap, why dont more girls play football? Maybe there is a reason why girls mature faster then boys?

Why did Romney lose

Here we are post-election scratching our heads and wondering what went wrong. Did obama win, or did romney lose? Obama won the election, but did romney help obama win the election?

The truth is, he should have never made it past the primaries. When the republican party elected romney as their candidate, the election was lost.

The more people learned about romney, the less they liked him.

Romney has too much baggage.

1 – The way romney made his money. There is nothing wrong with making money, it was “how” romney made his money that working class people disagree with.

Romney did not create anything. His investment firms bought, striped and then resold. That is not what made America great.

You not know what made America great? We built stuff. People like Henry Ford, people that created a product that people wanted.

What jobs did romney create, what factories did he have built? All I heard about was him and his investment firms sending jobs to china.

2 – Taxes. Working class people pay their fair share of taxes, and we expect our leaders to pay their fair share of taxes as well.

Exploiting tax loopholes with offshore banking accounts is not cool. That kind of behavior looks like romney was trying to hide something.

Why didn’t romney release his tax history? Was he trying to hide something?

3 – NRA rating / gun control. Romney does not have a clear record on gun regulation. In 2004 romney signed an assault-weapons ban.

Then he turns around and says he supports the right to own firearms.

This back-and-forth behavior does not go over well with gun owners. You can not sign an assault rifle ban, then turn around and say you support gun ownership.

If you want to win over gun owners, you have to make your stance very clear.

4 – No new ideas. What new ideas did romney bring to the table? Repeal the income tax? Stop free trade? Bring our factories back from china?

How was romney any different then obama, the bushs or clinton?

The working class knows how to fix the nation, and that is to stop free trade and bring our factories back from china.  But none of the people running for office will tell the people what they want to hear.

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