Why?

This blog is to help you in preparing for an emergency. It also contains other information that you might find spiritually up-lifting. This is not an official website of "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints". This site is maintained by Barry McCann (barry@mail.com)

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Have You Considered Bow Hunting For Survival?

Why should I spend my time learning a traditional skill – bow hunting – while we’re living in an era where we have powerful tools for survival such as firearms and the like?
This is a question that goes in the mind of preppers every time the idea of bow-hunting crosses their mind. If you also tend to undervalue the use of bow hunting for survival due to its antediluvian nature, pause and think again.
Acquiring bow hunting skills is as important as I was centuries ago. You never know when you’ll be left with no choice but to use what nature provides a method of hunting. When you’re stuck in the wilderness survival situation, you can bet on a bow and a set of arrows to save you.
Indeed, there are many more benefits that come with learning archery skills for hunting.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the Top reasons why should start learning this valuable skill today…

SIX Reasons Why You Should Start Learning Bow Hunting For Survival Today

  1. Bows Operate Quietly
In most hunting for survival situations, silent weapons are always the best. For instance, you don’t want to shout your location to fellow survivalists as they might follow run with your catch you get on it. For this reason, we highly recommend you to consider using bows which guarantee you of 100% noiseless operation. What’s more, they’re as deadly as the modern day, high-tech hunting tools and will take down your target with a single blow.

  1. Bows Are Economical
You can acquire a simple takedown bow at a reasonable price of several hundred bucks. One interesting thing about bows is that if you get a high-quality, well-made bow, it will serve you for a lifetime – making your investment worthwhile. Other than the bow, the arrows are also cost-effective; when you’ve polished your archery skills, you’ll find it easy to retrieve and reuse your arrows again and again. Besides, you can also learn to craft your arrows using natural wood or wooden dowels-another quite affordable option.

  1. Enjoy High Degree of Versatility
The modern day bow has undergone tremendous changes over the past years, centuries, to give you the best regarding performance. You’ll find the modern-day carbon-fiber arrow is incredibly lightweight and features a versatile tip that can accommodate different hunting tips. In other terms, you can use an extensive collection of different tips (including the small game stunner tips, standard practice tips, and so on) on the same arrow for various hunting games.

  1. Bows Are Incredibly Portable
Look at a simple take-down bow – it only weighs several pounds which make it extremely lightweight for transporting to your hunting spot. The tale gets better when you learn that you only to turn some lug screws to take down your bow. A typical bow comes with three main parts: two limbs and a middle grip section. This further enhances the portability of your bow – you can easily pack it in your survival backpack alongside several arrows (say 5-6).

  1. Multi-Purpose Weapon
Yes! A bow is highly versatile in the sense that you can use it for various things other than hunting. Simply disassemble the bowstring and use it different situations such as bow drill (for making a fire), make traps and snares, trot line fishing, and so much more.

  1. Extremely Careless Weapon Laws
And given that the rules and regulation of using these weapons are pretty lenient, you’re freed from the ordeal of the cumbersome paperwork and permits required for other hunting weapons such as guns and pellets.

Expert Tips on How To Get The Most Out of Bow Hunting For Survival

Now, allow me to share with you some great bow hunting tips and strategies that will help you hunt with your bow successfully…
– Strive to be an efficient hunter (that is, know where and when to hunt, and where to keep off). They might sound simple, but if you follow these things, you’ll experience significant changes in your hunting exercises. If possible, use trail cameras to help you determine the hot zones for hunting. This will magically increase your hunting success rates
– Develop patient skills; Bow-hunting is simply a waiting game. Preparation and constant practice will make a huge difference, but if you can’t develop this simple attitude, you might not be one of the best bow-hunters.
– Practice like you’ve never done before. Practicing shooting arrows at a fixed target in your backyard as you sip some beer or smoke a cigar isn’t enough. You need to get real-life shooting experience that will adequately prepare you for a real-life situation. Try to practice out of your comfort zone at all times – instead of shooting 30 yards, do 60. While still at it, it’s important to make ever shot count by being as much accurate as possible. Using a single pin bow sight is one of the coolest ways of dramatically increasing your accuracy!
– Learn to make target acquisition a few seconds exercise. Don’t take more than 4-5 seconds to settle your pin and shoot the target. This is all that matters in real-life hunting situations. Practice holding your bow at full draw as long as you can to prepare yourself to confront that deer the moment it shows up!
– Never wait for the deer to come to your stand. Go where they are. Always be versatile, even if it means putting extra effort. You might even need to climb trees or hide behind logs but know that you’ll be handsomely rewarded at the end of it all.
– One more tip: when hunting try to find hidden food sources of food of the game you’re chasing. If you locate carrots, you’re guaranteed of finding the rabbit there as well. Remember that using lures to draw in the game always work like a charm, so try to be as much imaginative as possible while in the wilderness.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Point Zero Energy HomeGrid™ 5000HD Solar Electrical Generator



Point Zero Energy HomeGrid™ 5000HD Solar Electrical Generator

I’m a pretty jaded type. I don’t often get excited, but I was all “a-tingle” when I got word of what was heading my way for review.  Most of my reviews are of small items, handheld radios, machetes, hand axes, not 200 lbs. of high-end, high power solar generator.
Needless to say, I was as giddy as a little school girl.
You see, any serious prepping plan needs a foundation based on sustainability. You need to work from a sustainable supply of anything to hold your own, whether it’s a supply of beans, bullets or banjo strings. This applies especially for electricity.
The ultimate goal is to live comfortably “off grid”.  Unless a life of a wilderness mountain man with flint & tinder is your bag, if you want electric lights, air conditioning & internet, you’ll need a powerful electrical generator.
Just like it’s name, this solar-powered electrical generator is made to supply a entire household with clean, continuous electricity, for totally off-grid living.
Four heavy boxes arrived from Point Zero Energy by ground freight, with two large deep cycle 12V DC batteries, the inverter/generator unit, unit base, cart wheels & handle. Plus two pairs of solar panels, with two 100 watt panel built into sturdy frames with hinged supports & carry handles. Total capacity of the included solar panels came to 400 watts. Also included, was an assortment of parts including a heavy duty battery charge controller, three heavy-gauge jumper cables & connecting cables for the solar panels, along with an illustrated manual & instructional DVD.
Assembly was straight forward… the generator  bolts to the flat metal base with welded axle for the two wheels. At each side of the generator sits the two 12VDC batteries, on top of the generator a heavy duty handle is bolted on. Everything can be pushed around like a hand truck. The two batteries get wired in series to the generator to supply 24 Volts DC. On the front face of the Inverter/Generator are four 110VAC outlets, two USB outlets & One 220VAC outlet. There’s also a power & standby toggle switch and an LED Display that shows battery status & output voltage.
With the large capacity deep cycle dry cells & heavy duty inverter, the Homegrid™ 5000HD is capable of 5000 watts of continuous 110 & 220 AC Power, and a whopping 22,000 watts of peak surge power. Read that again…TWENTY-TWO THOUSAND WATTS Surge power.  Meaning the generator can easily power multiple home appliances simultaneously including refrigerators, freezers, microwave ovens, and cooking appliances. It’s pure sine wave power output will safely run power tools, electronics, and medical equipment.
A “Mac-Daddy Cadillac” Solar Generator, perfect for off-grid living. Two things make it deliver… Massive Dry Cell Batteries with tremendous capacity & a robust DC/AC inverter, built to take tremendous demand. The 220 Volt output, wired to a household circuit breaker system can give household appliances clean dependable electrical power day & night.
For my test, I plugged into my house transfer switch circuit, specifically to isolate my home off the Utility Company power meter, (and avoiding back feeding). There was no noticeable difference to the house load. The TV worked fine, my computers booted up, lights came on through the house, the refrigerator & microwave ran without a hiccup. Even my water well, with it’s 220V AC motor did it’s job. Then I ran some power tools… my chop saw & band saw in the shop, they all cut wood with no telltale difference in performance.
Overall, the power draw on the generator was usually less than 2500 watts, most often less than a thousand watts. It was when the refrigerator compressor came on, or when the well pump kicked on that power surged. Throughout my test, the generator was loafing along, operating well under capacity all day & even all night. One exception though, my house AC unit wasn’t in the transfer circuit. When I wired up my transfer switch, I didn’t include it in the circuit so I couldn’t put it to test. Still, the AC is rated to draw 1500 to 3000 watts when operating, the HomeGrid™ 5000HD has the capacity to handle the load.  Through the night there wasn’t much demand, just the few lights I had on, my computer & TV, and the refrigerator… altogether, no more than 1000 watts. By next morning, the battery status indictor showed less than one quarter depletion, and within the first hours of daylight, the system had regained a full charge by the solar panels.
Using the 400 watt solar panel array, the generator’s batteries can easily be topped off throughout the day letting the system handle the heavy lifting alone only during the night. The generator can also accommodate a second 400 watt array as well.  Typically the deep cycle battery service life offers 7 to 8 years of reliable service.
Granted, my review was a weekend of use test, and in the long term, my energy demands would widely vary from day to day & seasonally. However, with some reasonable budgeting on the amount of power use, the Point Zero Energy HomeGrid™5000HD could give me a totally off grid existence right out of the box. Just by adding additional batteries & solar cells, the well of electrical power I’d have on tap would be far more than my modest needs. The great news is the HomeGrid™ 5000HD is easily expandable & PORTABLE.
My only gripe isn’t really a gripe at all.
I was staggered by the weight the Point Zero Energy HomeGrid™5000HD.  Although designed & built to be portable, you’d be smart to have a couple of stout helpers to pitch in moving the generator & battery unit. By myself, it was a task. The solar panels are not a problem, but you certainly work up a sweat horsing the generator unit & batteries around. Imagine taking a hand truck and deadlifting a small refrigerator up some stairs.  Again, this isn’t really a gripe against the gear, more it’s against my own lack of strength. The weight is actually a good testament of the sheer ruggedness built into the unit. Point Zero Energy isn’t building wimpy gear here, it’s high quality, high capacity & highly reliable power generation equipment. It’s well worth the sizable investment to insure safe, reliable, & dependable electrical energy to live totally off-grid, yet still enjoy modern electrical appliances in your household.  Until Doc Brown & Marty McFly shows up with a Mr. Fusion home reactor, the Point Zero Energy HomeGrid™ 5000HD is anyone’s ticket to an off-grid lifestyle. Now that I’ve experienced life off-grid, I’m striving for more.
Pay a visit to Point Zero Energy’s website to learn more about the complete line of HomeGrid™ Solar Powered Electrical Generators.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

What Do You Know About Maps?

It is not be that long that we’ve had smartphones and GPS enabled devices, but for many it’d be unbearable to live without them and getting lost would be a daily pain. Not so long ago we were completely reliant without this technology.
There are still going to be times that it wouldn’t be that bad to know how to use a map or other navigational techniques. It doesn’t even have to be in a scary situation but due to everyday circumstances. There’s the possibility you’ll need to navigate without GPS.  You might find you have no Internet access, the battery has gone out or you’re in a foreign place with no streets.

Mastering the Map
There are a large variety of maps out there that have differing uses. There are road maps for people driving through the city or other residential and country roads. They have maps for famous tourist attractions that are good for sightseeing or famous landmarks. Then there are maps for hikers and anyone out exploring the country. We’ll explore all of these maps and what works best for you.
Many people are familiar with the all-popular Google Maps, that isn’t always available though without the Internet connection.  You’ll have to learn a few things about choosing a map and picking the one that best suits your environment.
Check the map’s orientation. Most maps are drawn with north located at the top.
Sometimes this may be depicted using a compass rose. Or, it might simply be stated to be the assumption of the map. If there is no indication to the contrary, presume it is north at the top.

Mapping the Journey
All maps have key figures to take note when you’re going to be using them. All maps should have a legend. These legends are a key of symbols denoting things on the map itself. So they’ll be different if you’re traversing the wild in a car like the Jeep Renegade or heading down a bustling street in the city.
Lines can depict roads and routes from a side street to major artery of a highway. They’ll vary in size and color depending on the environment.

Natural & Artificial Topography 
Forests, parks, and grassy areas will be denoted in green. The same goes for the symbolic relation between bodies of water and other natural objects. Cities are usually shown in shades of grey and black tones.  It’s always a good idea to keep a backup map in your car or offline version on some kind of device for whatever environment you may be entering into. If the place isn’t familiar then you can’t rely on just the map forever.
By driving around without GPS you can then use the technology and eventually paper or offline maps for reference.  It really comes down to knowing what type of map you need, being able to understand the symbols and finding your way around by current location and being able to check out the area around you beforehand.
 

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

The TOP 11 Gifts For the Skeptical Prepper

With the Holidays fast approaching I know how frustrating it can be trying to get loved ones the perfect gifts that is not only practical but will benefit them in ways a flashy pretty piece of jewelry or a cool video game can’t. Having first hand experience with getting high dollar prepping items for non-preppers who not only don’t appreciate them but also shake their head in disdain is a feeling all to familiar to me. So here I have compiled a list of 11 gift ideas under $50 that can put that loved one in a better predicament of preparedness without them even knowing it. This list is non-excusive that will make for great gift ideas for both guys and gals of all ages!
  1. Portable Power pack
Portable Power packs come in all shapes, sizes, colors and capacities. I have found these not only extremely well received by non-preppers but unprecedented by most in the overall preparedness value it brings. The typical IPhone battery is about 2,000 mah of power. With power packs ranging from 2,000 mah to the 50,000 “All Powers” external power pack. The user can charge their portable electronics many times over. Not only are their uses for small electronics great but also they provide so much diversity in regards to their many colors, sizes and applications. Giving your loved ones the ability to meet all their small electronic needs is a huge prepping multiplier! We all know inclimate weather, terrorism, earthquakes, accidents, and overall disaster will happen it’s never been a matter of if but when. According to Current statistics there are over 260 million cell phone users in the United States of America! With this knowledge in mind equip your loved ones with the ability to send that text message, write that tweet, updated that Facebook status, hash tag their ideas, post that controversial idea, record that memorable moment. But most importantly give them the life saving power they need to get in contact with Emergency services and loved ones in the event something goes wrong! You will be happier and can rest assured knowing you have set them up for success.
  1. Foldable solar panel
Small foldable solar panels are not only “hipster and progressive” in many aspects but provide a wealth of preparedness capabilities unparalleled in many respects. Not only do these solar panels provide an unlimited amount of electricity when the sun is out but are very easy to store and user friendly to use. Requiring virtually no maintenance upkeep, they can be that lifeline you can depend on when everything around you is falling apart. They can be used and implemented anywhere at anytime as long as there is light. Even under bad forecast they can provide you the life saving power you or someone you know may need in the event of a disaster.  Now couple this with an external power pack (Apple Product Power Pack) and now you have an unlimited power source that can keep you off grid indefinitely! You will be hard pressed to find something that brings more independence and stress free living then being able to personally provide for all your small electronic power needs free from the power grid!

  1. Solar flash light/ Lantern
Light more often then not is something that is taken for granted by the average person. Fortunately most of us live in a world where we can flip and switch and magically we have light. While this is ideal it’s not always the case when disaster strikes. Solar Lighting not only gives the user the ability to have light where they may otherwise not have it but also allows them to have lighting abilities indefinitely because they are not susceptible to depleted disposable batteries, or oil sources like what we see with traditional flashlights and oil lanterns. Natural sunlight light can be taken advantage of during the day and can be used at night. Also like the already mentioned items many of them have the ability to be also used as an external power pack giving them more then one use. We don’t realize the importance of light until the light goes out and we hear that boom in the middle of the night! Remember two is one, one is none. To see the capabilities these light devices have check out my product review.
  1. Cutting Tools
When you say cutting tools you are referring to a broad diverse spectrum of “sharp objects”. This was done purposely every one is different and requires different types of cutting tools. What I would give a college sorority girl that drives a Toyota corolla and has no preparedness inclination versus an avid hunter that drives a lifted 4×4 truck and stays off the beaten path for days at a time is going to be different in style and ergonomics; but the methodology and application will be very similar. Examples for a self-defense situation I would be more inclined to give a college sorority girl a “Honeycomb Hairbrush concealed stiletto dagger” or a “Cat personal safety key chain”. They are complete concealable very fashionable that can go with any purse or outfit. These items will provide a quick control for an unprecedented attack while serving primarily as an everyday use item. While for my avid hunter, Military, or EMS person I might give a “SOG Fast-hawk Hatchet” that can be used as a self defense tool, extrication device, wood cutting tool etc. As you can see cutting tools have a wide range of styles and uses that can serve a diverse array of preparedness needs without coming across as such.
  1. Portable water filter
Portable water filters are one of those small cheap out of sight out of mind water applications that quite frankly will at a minimum sustain life! These make a perfect gift for all people regardless of age, gender, or lifestyle. I can say from personal experience being well traveling around the world these have been a game changer. Being in other countries where the tap water was considered unsafe due to viruses and bacteria I never had to worry about where I got my drinking water. Especially with products like the “Sawyer mini Water Filter” that will easily screw onto any commercial water bottle I was able to fill up my bottle (from any local water source) attach the filter and keep moving without any fear of contracting any water borne illnesses. Most commercial portable water filters on the market today will remove over 99% of all bacteria, such as salmonella, cholera and E.coli and remove over 99% of all protozoa elements such as Giardia and Cryptosporidium. The “Sawyer Mini Water Filter” Claims it can filter up to 100,000 gallons and weighs only 2 ounces. According to science the average adult human body is 50-65% water. On average the every day American family uses about 80-100 gallons of water per day. While this is taking other water usages into calculation one can still see the importance of water especially when considering that in a disaster the average person will be expending more calories and using more water. No matter where you are whether that be in a local park, traveling in another country, or in the safety of ones home drinking clean potable water is an absolute necessity and water is unequivocally the giver of life! Make having clean and potable water a necessity!
  1. Waterproof speakers with external charging capabilities
The waterproof speakers with external charging capabilities are what gets the person from the sidelines into the action in regards to preparedness. This is a gateway preparedness gift. Regardless if you are an NCAA Cheerleader, Surfer, camper, Military Service member, or the everyday person the ability to access to and have all their music and electronic needs met is an extremely good selling point. According to a Nielsen’s Music 360 2014 study, 93% of the U.S. population listens to music, spending more than 25 hours each week jamming out to their favorite tunes. The waterproof speakers encourage the user to take their lives off the beaten path, to push beyond the realms of their typical everyday habits. The external charging capabilities give the user an added layer of support and comfort being outside in those environments. Now add a foldable solar panel and the possibilities for adventures off the beaten path are endless. It’s much easier to engage someone in a “what if” scenario or talk about preparedness if your already off the beaten path, outside the “safety confines” of the power grid simultaneously creating your own endless energy while listening to their favorite music. I’m just saying!
  1. Seed Bank/Plant
Seeds and plants are one of the only prep “gifts” that will give back in dividends that will exceed the initial cost. Being able to take a handful of seeds or a plant and create an endless life-sustaining ecosystem is truly beyond words. Permaculture does more then just provides a means by which to feed ones self. Permaculture in many respects is one of the most rewarding pursuits we can do as human beings. Giving us the ability to create and take care of life, being independent of the corporate bureaucracy of Big Ag, and allows one to create their own sustainable paradigm. The lessons gained from the successes and losses of growing.  Not to mention the invaluable skill set that has been slowly taken out of our modern day society. Living in a day and age where we have become so dependent on a system that could careless theconsequences of their actions and practices should worry us all. So stay one step ahead of chaos get someone you care about a small seed variety pack, or a tomato plant. If you really like them get them a moringa tree!
  1. Multi-Tool
Multi-Tools are invaluable to anyone, they provide hundreds of functions and are more compact then wallet or small makeup case. Yet it provides the essentials to most day-to-day maintenance. Whether we are talking about opening a bottle or performing a plumbing task using pliers and a cutting tool. The Multi-Tool is a silent hero; it can be carried as an EDC or left in the glove box of a vehicle until needed. It’s a jack-of-all-trades but master of none. You won’t necessarily build a house with it but it can get you out of pretty much any tight situation you might find yourself in. To top it off, in modern day 2016 Multi-Tools are no longer big bulky steel bricks carried in the same old leather or webbing straps. They come in all styles, colors, and designs. They even have bracelet Multi-Tools
  1. Hand-Crank Emergency Power Source
I’ll let you choose what features are important to you but having a power source independent of another source but your will is absolute by its own definition!  We don’t get to choose when disaster will strike, or how it strikes, or what is affected. What we can do is decide for ourselves how prepared we will be. Having the ability to provide an indefinite amount of light, power, and communication etc. day and night is what preparedness is all about. How many times have we looked down at our cell phone and realized we at minimum battery life now, now throw a wrench in your charging plan. That’s where these device swoop in to save the day. Many Hand-Crank Emergency Power Sources charge at the same rate as plugging it into a wall outlet. So in a few minutes you can bring a phone back from the dead regardless of the time, emergency, or situation you find yourself in!
  1. Emergency Car Kit
Do you know a loved one with a vehicle? Do they have an Emergency Kit in their vehicle? If they don’t they are wrong and so are you! In the United States alone, approximately 7 tire punctures occur every second, resulting in 220 million flat tires per year. Approximately 50% of Americans don’t know how to change a tire. I could talk to you for days on this subject but at the end of the day one must ask him or her self some simple questions. In an emergency situation will you depend on technology (AAA), the kindness of a stranger, or empower your self and loved ones to be self-sufficient?  I can’t tell you how many people I have helped that have found themselves broke down on the side of the road. It breaks my heart because I know somewhere down the line they were failed! Don’t fail your self or your loved ones. Give them and yourself the tools for success and most importantly train them to do the basics!
  1. Candles/Fire-Starter
Last but certainly not least we have candles and fire starters. I put these two in the same category because they go together very interchangeably. For the record U.S. retail sales of candles are estimated at approximately $3.2 billion annually, excluding sales of candle accessories (Source: Mintel, 2015). Candles are used in 7 out of 10 U.S. households, and are seen as an acceptable gift by both mean and women. Not to mention Candles come in an endless variety of shapes, sizes and uses. We see this from votive to floating candles to those that are used in religious and ritual like settings.
Regardless of why or how you use candles the ability to hold a flame is paramount in a disaster situation! So if holding a flame is paramount starting a flame is essential. Now I’m not advocating going out and getting everyone a Ferrocerium rod bush craft kit with char cloth all included. Nor am I saying go out and get your 19 year old college sorority daughter a pack of cheap plastic Bic lighters either. The great thing about fire starters now-a-days is that they come in all styles and colors. You have the Colibri Scepter lighter that looks like a tube of lipstick for the ladies to the custom Harley Davidson zippo for the seasoned veteran biker. In my humble opinion I would say that candles and fire starters are not only the easiest, and least expensive gifts to give but will arguable be, the first thing one reaches for in the event of a disaster. The ability to have a lite candle not only helps our physical needs in regards to light and heat. But the psychological ones are just as important if not more. The flame’s soft illumination reaches the soul; it can deliver hope and instill a calming relief.  This coupled the aromatherapy of a scented candle can literally make all the difference in a disaster setting!
This completes my Top 11 gifts for your non-prepper friends and family. While the old slogan “it’s the thought that counts” may resonate with a lot of people it’s important to realize that your feelings and thoughts won’t be the deciding factor in who lives and who dies. Their ability to react logically and swiftly with the right tools will be the deciding factor. While you may not be able to control ones actions you can equip them with the right tools and get the brain working in the preparedness mindset without them even realizing it and that is the purpose of this article.
I can tell you from personal experience when I realized this reality. I was there when the May 3rd Tornado hit the Midwest in 1999. Not only do I remember the destruction that it left in its wake in my small Cleveland County, Oklahoma town. I remember my mother reaching under the bathroom sink to grab three candles so she could provide just a little light to her 3 confused and frightened boys. I remember her lighting these candles she had received as a gift. I don’t remember who gave them to her, but I can tell you I will never forget the smell of that first apple cider candle she lite, nor will I forget the impact of what a simple candle can do for a small frightened family in a ravaged home. I don’t personally think that individual who gave us those candles envisioned the scenario that they would be used for. Nor do I believe they knew the impact that such a small gift would have on someone’s life. But what I can say unequivocally was that small flame ignited hope, determination, and most importantly a quenching desire to seek knowledge on all that is preparedness and to teach others everything I can. So wherever you may be, wherever life might I have taken you I want to say from the bottom of my heart; Thank You.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Centerville Home Storage Center

We wanted to let you know some basic facts about the Centerville Home Storage Center. We sell canned and bagged food that can be purchased by anybody. The Center’s new operating hours are Tuesday thru Friday from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM and Saturday from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM. The Center is located at 1180 West 500 North in Centerville (west of the freeway). The phone number is 801-298-2208.

Please let your members know about the Home Storage Center, so they can take advantage of the opportunities it gives to members.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Places to Stash Your EDC Items

By far the biggest issue when it comes to the items we carry with us on a daily basis is the location. We want to be as mobile as possible and we sometimes find it hard to fit everything. There is a simple answer to concealing and carrying your EDC items.
Many folks replace them with smaller items in order to do that… and that works, but it’s easier to simply figure out more places to store these items.
Inside Your Pockets. Duh!
But are you buying clothes that have more pockets? You know, like cargo pants? Of course, it’ll be a pain in the you-know-what to move them around, but you can just buy more of some of the cheaper items.
What if you don’t want to buy new clothes? Well, you may not know this but you can actually add pockets on your own. Sewing is an important survival skill, by the way, so it wouldn’t hurt for you to learn it.
Get a Bigger Wallet
Lots can be said about edc wallets… water resistance, number of compartments, size… Up to you which one you want, so long as you store the items in a way that won’t raise any eyebrows. If you work in an office, it might be hard to explain why you carry a Fresnel lens with you all the time, so look for wallets with lockable compartments.
Get a Messenger Bag
If you’re a lady, carrying a purse is normal, but if you’re a guy and you want more EDC items on you, you might be stuck getting a man-purse or a briefcase. I’ll leave it up to you to figure out which one you should choose, but know this: such a bag will allow you to carry A LOT more items with you. And that’s a good thing… just remember that, if your bag is lost or stolen, you’ll have to start all over again.
This is why it’s important to do your homework when purchasing survival items: you don’t want to spend a bunch of money on expensive gear that you can lose. No matter what edc item you’re looking to buy, there will always be cheap yet quality items for sale.
Tip: if you want something that looks like a briefcase but not as fancy, you can always go for a laptop bag. A very good, sturdy bag is made by Swiss Army and has lasted us years.
Wear Things AROUND Your Body
Lanyards, belts and backpacks are great ways to carry things while keeping your hands free. And since fashion is probably not your main concern, don’t let anyone stop you from wearing all three of them if you want.
Now, I don’t know about your health conditions but wearing a backpack on your back is a great work-out for your body AND good practice for when you’ll have to evacuate with your BOB.
Camouflaging Your Items
As I mentioned before in this article, you don’t really want other people to know you have all these things with you. Sure, some people don’t care but others still want to keep their job and friends. I can understand both points of view and, since I’m a problem solver, the solution I came up with is to try and camouflage these items.
I talked before about wallets with lockable compartments, so that’s a good start. But if we focus on the definition of camouflage, one way to do it is to hide your survival items among the “innocent” ones.
For example, you may want to keep some maps or emergency phone numbers in the notebook you carry with you at all times. You may want to keep 1-2 band-aids in your wallet, behind your id card. You may want to keep some tinder along with your medication in a waterproof storage container around your neck, and so on.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Are we a republic or a democracy?

We often hear the claim that our nation is a democracy. That wasn’t the vision of the founders. They saw democracy as another form of tyranny. If we’ve become a democracy, I guarantee you that the founders would be deeply disappointed by our betrayal of their vision. The founders intended, and laid out the ground rules, for our nation to be a republic.

The word “democracy” appears nowhere in the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution – two most fundamental documents of our nation. Instead of a democracy, the Constitution’s Article IV, Section 4, guarantees “to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government.” Moreover, let’s ask ourselves: Does our pledge of allegiance to the flag say to “the democracy for which it stands,” or does it say to “the republic for which it stands”? Or do we sing “The Battle Hymn of the Democracy” or “The Battle Hymn of the Republic”?

So what’s the difference between republican and democratic forms of government? John Adams captured the essence of the difference when he said, “You have rights antecedent to all earthly governments; rights that cannot be repealed or restrained by human laws; rights derived from the Great Legislator of the Universe.” Nothing in our Constitution suggests that government is a grantor of rights. Instead, government is a protector of rights.

In recognition that it’s Congress that poses the greatest threat to our liberties, the framers used negative phrases against Congress throughout the Constitution such as: shall not abridge, infringe, deny, disparage, and shall not be violated, nor be denied. In a republican form of government, there is rule of law. All citizens, including government officials, are accountable to the same laws. Government power is limited and decentralized through a system of checks and balances. Government intervenes in civil society to protect its citizens against force and fraud but does not intervene in the cases of peaceable, voluntary exchange.

Contrast the framers’ vision of a republic with that of a democracy. In a democracy, the majority rules either directly or through its elected representatives. As in a monarchy, the law is whatever the government determines it to be. Laws do not represent reason. They represent power. The restraint is upon the individual instead of government. Unlike that envisioned under a republican form of government, rights are seen as privileges and permissions that are granted by government and can be rescinded by government.

How about a few quotations demonstrating the disdain our founders held for democracy?

James Madison, Federalist Paper No. 10: In a pure democracy, “there is nothing to check the inducement to sacrifice the weaker party or the obnoxious individual.”

At the 1787 Constitutional Convention, Edmund Randolph said, ” … that in tracing these evils to their origin every man had found it in the turbulence and follies of democracy.”

John Adams said, “Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There was never a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.”

Chief Justice John Marshall observed, “Between a balanced republic and a democracy, the difference is like that between order and chaos.”

In a word or two, the founders knew that a democracy would lead to the same kind of tyranny the colonies suffered under King George III.

The framers gave us a Constitution that is replete with undemocratic mechanisms. One that has come in for recent criticism and calls for its elimination is the Electoral College. In their wisdom, the framers gave us the Electoral College so that in presidential elections large, heavily populated states couldn’t democratically run roughshod over small, sparsely populated states.

Here’s my question: Do Americans share the republican values laid out by our founders, and is it simply a matter of our being unschooled about the differences between a republic and a democracy? Or is it a matter of preference and we now want the kind of tyranny feared by the founders where Congress can do anything it can muster a majority vote to do? I fear it’s the latter.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Here is an opportunity for the Boy Scouts in our wards to receive some emergency preparedness training

Dear District Emergency Coordinators,

We are continuously stressing the importance of CERT trainings and having trained individuals in your districts, but we now have a fun opportunity for the Boy Scouts in your district to participate and see the importance of CERT.  Requirement 7a of the Boy Scout Emergency Preparedness Merit Badge is: “Take place in an emergency service project, either a real one or a practice drill, with a Scouting or community agency.”

On Saturday Nov 12, 2016 we are having a Mock Disaster for the CERT students that are just finishing their 8 week class.  It would be a great time for the boys to meet the emergency preparedness requirement and we could use their help.  We would like the scouts to be "disaster victims."  Having live, interactive victims makes it much more real for the CERTs and improves their learning experience.  Being a victim is also a great way to learn, both scouts and adults often comment about how much they have learned from being a victim and watching the rescue teams.

Here are the details of the Mock Disaster that the Scouts should know:

We have limited “victim” spots available and RSVPing is required.

The disaster will be Saturday, Nov 12 and will be at the Woods Cross Public Works Complex on the NW corner of Redwood Road and 1500 South.  The entrance is located off of 1500 South.  “Victims” should be there by 9:00.  They will have moulage applied to look like they have real injuries.  The moulage injuries combined with the acting that the Scouts do will make very realistic patients for the new the CERTs to practice on.  Scouts should wear older clothes that they don’t mind getting a little “bloody” (no uniforms)  but also need to dress warmly enough for the conditions.  If they wear some old clothes that they don’t mind being completely ruined then they can have the best “injuries”.  They will be in an unheated garage most of the time but also outside part of the time.  They will be done by about 12:30 pm.  Scouts who have done this in the past have always enjoyed it and always want to do it again even after getting emergency preparedness merit badge!

It is necessary to have a parent or scout leader come with each group of Scouts to make sure they  are doing OK and to help supervise them.  Occasionally, youth find the blood, chaos and injuries traumatic even if it is not real.  Also, although the disaster will be simulated it will occur in a working public works building that has real hazards such as machinery, tools and  chemicals.  The adults can be victims too and play the part of concerned parent demanding CERT students care for their child.  It’s fun for everyone.  

We would appreciate your passing this information on to your Stake Boy Scout leaders.  We only have room for 20 victims in this scenario and the first to RSVP will have reserved spots.  The next exercise we have after this one will be March 25th. To RSVP or if you have any questions please email Rob Hunter,  CERT@BountifulUtah.gov .

Thank you for your help.

Rob Hunter
Bountiful CERT Coordinator

PS, Thank you for all of your efforts to help Bountiful become better prepared!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Skills Needed in a Survival Group

Do you know what skill sets you have accumulated within your survival family? Think about it for a minute. What does each person bring to the survival group that is beneficial and needed in some way or another?
These are thoughts that have been in my mind for a few weeks now. So I sat down and did some research and put together a list of skill sets that are almost a must have for any group. One of the great things about this list is you can mark off what you have mastered and pick something else to work on. In doing this you become multi-beneficial to the group which is fantastic. Not only would you have the skill sets but you can teach the children.
Below are a few things to consider adding to your group or personal skills:
  1. Perimeter Security
  2. Plant Identification
  3. Gardening Skills (includes winter gardening, herbs)
  4. Butchering Skills (includes salting, smoking and curing meat)
  5. Food Preservation (canning, drying, dehydrating, smoking, grains)
  6. Raising Livestock (Chickens, ducks, rabbits, goats, pigs)
  7. Hunting/Fishing
  8. Medical Skills/Dental Skills
  9. Electrical Knowledge
  10. Carpentry
  11. Plumbing
  12. Welding
  13. Sign Language
  14. Mechanical Skills (cars, appliances, lawn equipment etc.)
  15. HAM Radio Skills
  16. Bee Keeping
  17. Candle Making
  18. Sewing Skills (Clothes & Blankets)
  19. Soap Making
  20. Shoe Making
  21. Baking Bread
  22. Churning Butter
  23. Charcoal Making
  24. Martial Arts
  25. Marksmanship/Weapons
  26. Brick Making
  27. Tool Making
These are the things I can think of and some I found doing research. I hope this helps you out and please feel free to comment on what you would add.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Supreme Court

The public does not elect members of the Supreme Court. We elect an office holder, who selects a nominee, and such nominee must then be confirmed by the US Senate. Once confirmed, a Justice of the Supreme Court serves for life, unless impeached and removed from office.

Because of the death of Justice Scalia, this election takes place against a background of one vacancy on the Supreme Court. There are other members whose health and age make additional vacancies likely to happen during the next four years. Because of this, we know the next President of the United States will make at least one, and perhaps several appointments to the highest court in the land.

There are several issues that invade every aspect of our lives which the Supreme Court either has or will be asked to decide.

Should men who “self-identify” as women be permitted to use a woman’s bathroom? Should this be allowed even if there are minor children in the bathroom? This issue is now winding its way through the Federal Court system.

Should all churches be subject to public accommodation laws? If so, can churches be required likewise to allow men into women’s restrooms, even if minor children are in the same bathroom? The Massachusetts Attorney General is threatening to litigate this very issue.

Is Obamacare constitutional? It has been upheld in a split decision based on the power to adopt a tax, despite the fact that Obamacare would be unconstitutional if based on the power to regulate commerce. 

However, since it originated in the US Senate, and the power to adopt a new tax is confined to bills originating in the US House of Representatives (Article 1, Section 7, Clause 1), will this make the law unconstitutional?

When a rancher in Wyoming excavated an area along the stream on his property, and created a pond, did that subject his property to regulation by the EPA under the Clean Water Act? The EPA imposed a $20 million fine claiming they had that right. If the Supreme Court were to weigh in on such a dispute, what would they decide?

Are the limits of the Second Amendment broad or limited? Is the right of citizens to “keep and bear arms” broad enough to allow few regulations? On what basis can there be restrictions?

Is executive legislative action taken by any President of the United States an unconstitutional invasion of the legislative power confined to Congress? If not, how far can an executive impose “executive orders” which defy, neglect or contradict legislative action taken by Congress?

Everything from how you are investigated about an alleged crime, to how you are charged with an alleged crimeand how you are to be prosecuted for the alleged crime is up to the Supreme Court. That court alone determines the extent of governmental power, and what steps are necessary to protect your rights against self-incrimination, due process, protection against cruel and unusual punishment, and right to legal counsel. Do these protections apply to US Citizens if the Commander in Chief employs a drone to kill people in foreign lands?

Recently a divided Federal Appeals Court upheld a law requiring the Catholic Little Sisters of the Poor to provide abortion and contraceptive care, contrary to Catholic Church teachings. The decision means the Little Sisters of the Poor face up to $2.5 million a year in fines.

The Fourth Amendment protects citizens from unreasonable searches and seizures. Federal agencies are spying on citizens at an unprecedented level because of Internet, email, smart-phones and social media. The Supreme Court will be asked to determine what, if any, limits the Constitution provides to citizens under this Amendment.

The extent to which government can oppress, impose its will, tax, regulate, spy, and burden you and your property is decided in the final analysis by the Supreme Court. If Congress oversteps its limits, the Supreme Court can nullify their acts. If the President oppresses or acts illegally, it is up to the Supreme Court as the final arbiter to reign him in.

The potential justices nominated by the next President to serve on the US Supreme Court may have greater effect on your life, liberty and property than will the President. As you vote, you may want to consider the likely selection to be made by the only two candidates who stand any chance of being elected. Throwing a vote away for some symbolic gesture, as recent polling suggests Utah is now willing to do, means abdicating the decision to others (if this election is close). This seems foolish, given the enormous importance of the role the next President will have in filling the US Supreme Court.

The difference between the likely appointees of the two candidates cannot be fully known until an appointment is made. But there are two competing judicial philosophies that broadly reflect these differences:

A conservative judicial appointment would generally favor allowing social change to come slowly and to be accomplished by legislation. This approach allows elected officials to reach a consensus through compromise legislation. An activist liberal judicial appointment would view the court as an agent of change. Instead of following behind public consensus, the court’s decision can compel social changes even without a national consensus. These different approaches result in very different decisions. It is often the case that an activist decision changes society, but leaves scars and turmoil because there was no attempt to reach a consensus. Should the Supreme Court have the power to usurp the people and attempt to reshape our society?