Are you ready?

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On the television this morning as I ate breakfast was yet another economic guy explaining how the U.S. economy is nothing but a shaky house of cards. He explained about how the Fed is just propping it all up by buying bonds and keeping interest rates low while at the same time printing money at an unprecedented rate.

“Their goal,” he said, “or at least what I believe is their goal, is to keep all the balls in the air until the 2016 election. No matter who wins, they can expect to be a one term president because they will be dealing with a world of hurt. So, at least in that aspect, Hillary would not be a bad sacrificial lamb.

He continued to say that it’s not if it’s all going to fall apart, but when. If it goes according to plan, it will be after Obama is gone. But many other people I have talked with disagree with his timing. They think that perhaps the plan is for a crash before the elections and that this is all just part of the process. Certainly if you believe there are those who want a world government, it fits. The main impediments to that goal are America’s prosperity and our Constitution. Destroy those, create a scared, desperate population and we will buy any load of horseshit they will sell us about “hope and change.”

Personally, I don’t know what to think. Except that I have studied just enough history and economics to believe that something bad is coming sooner rather than later.

Every day more and more people are coming around to that way of thinking. The “prepper” movement is going mainstream and those who mocked preppers a few years ago are joining the ranks today.

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But, true prepping is a lot more than beans, band aids and bullets. If (when?) our economy crashes there will be a lot of shortages. Some things we can’t do much about. For example, if you are insulin dependent diabetic, it’s going to be bad. Insulin has a short shelf life and you can’t store more than a few months’ worth. If the supply dries up, there is no good way for it to end.

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But also consider the smaller things. Toilet paper, paper towels, baby wipes. We survived for eons without those things, but it wasn’t fun. What about medical supplies? In the book, The 14th Reinstated Emily was doing her best to give medical help to those in need. But it was taking a toll in ways we don’t think about, as this passage illustrates.

 “Hello,” I said when I walked into the doctor’s office. “With the amount of ‘anesthesia’ Davy was pouring I forgot my manners and I never properly thanked you for helping me. I also neglected to introduce myself. I apologize.”

“I know who you are,” she said with a smile, “I am Emily.”

She washed her hands as she spoke and after drying them on a cloth towel, extended a chapped and raw right hand for me to shake.

“Sorry, but latex gloves are a thing of the past, so is gentle soap and hand lotion. It’s okay if you don’t want to shake my hand. I have to scrub several times a day with homemade soap and then wash with alcohol, usually something we distilled, to try to stay sterile. It takes a toll on my hands. At night I soak them in lanolin that we get from the sheep, but it’s not enough. I know it’s not healthy for me or my patients to have my hands with open sores like this, but I am at a loss about what to do to fix the problem.”

I took her hand as gently as I could and thanked her again for helping me.

“The next time Jack stops at my place I’ll send you some steaks as payment. I also have some latex gloves in my shop. I used them back before to keep my hands out of the harsh solvents we used cleaning guns. When things started to go bad, I bought several cases of them; I’ll send them to you. They are not sterile, but you can rinse with alcohol to take care of that. I hope your hands will heal soon after that.

“Thanks, but if it’s all the same to you I’ll take my meat as burger and roasts. I never did like steak. As for the gloves, well, I just can’t thank you enough.” She started to tear up and turned away from me. “You have no idea how painful and shameful these hands can be.”

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You may have laid in a good amount of antibiotics and other medicines, but do you have any gloves? I don’t mean the few in your first aid kit, or even a box or two, they go fast. A case is a good idea. Maybe more. This is one small, but important thing.

When it comes to medical, what about training? If there is no health care system, it may well fall on you to provide medical care to your family. Can you do that? Perhaps you took a first aid class at work, or maybe you even had the initiative to go a step beyond and take an advanced first aid course. But those are all geared to stabilizing the patient and delivering him to professional medical care. What happens when you lose access to professional medical care?

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None of us is really going to be able to take out an appendix or do a C-section to deliver a baby. But can you suture a wound? I don’t mean just sewing it up. Do you know how to properly clean and prepare a bad wound before suturing? Can you set and stabilize a broken arm or leg? We have gotten soft in America and have come to rely on professionals for everything. That’s a good thing. It shows that we have evolved as a society, but it’s that softness that’s going to lead to our downfall. We are so comfortable that we will not admit that there are people working to take it all away. We collectively bury out heads deeply up our asses and continue with our life.

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I hope I am wrong, that this will correct and America as we know it will last for generations. But what if I am not? We must be prepared to live a self-sufficient life. It won’t be easy and it probably won’t be long. Even with preparing we could well revert back to the conditions and lifespan of the 1800s. But, that will be better than the very short survival expectations for those who have done nothing to prepare.

Now is the time to build supplies, take some courses, buy some books and ask some questions. Get ready. What’s the worst that could happen? That you learn some useful things? No matter what happens, those are things that might save a life someday.

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