Bruce’s Poor Man Survival Bulletin
A Digest of Urban Survival Resources
In This Issue:
1. Household tips for frugal consumers
2. Gathering an emergency food supply
3. Community scale biofuels, urban farming blog
4. DIY Shooting Range
5. Cash strapped cities enhancing bogus fines
Entities should not be multiplied more than necessary. --Occam’s Razor
The State of making money
It’s been reported that sixty-eight US lawmakers made a total of $27.5 million last year though ‘side jobs.’ This is on top of their $174,000 annual salary and other perks. The outside earnings, more than four times higher than in 2006, came from activities ranging from owning Subway franchises to selling chestnuts.
Meanwhile, the average American isn’t doing as well. US citizens are racking up credit card debt again after having reduced debt in 2009. It’s estimated we’ve added $9 billion in new credit card debt.
Compared with other countries, the US has one of smallest small business – only 34 percent have fewer than 50 employees, compared with 44 percent of French or 49 percent of Polish enterprises.
Local governments continue its assault on small business ventures. In Ohio, a man has been ordered to stop selling vegetables from his front yard. The man sold veggies to supplement his Social Security check but officials told he is not allowed to sell from a private home.
He’s now going to give away the vegetables so they don’t go to waste.
Meanwhile, fur sales have been banned in West Hollywood, the first such law in the nation. The ordinance bans the sale of new clothing made in whole or part from the pelt of an animal with hair. Although animal rights activists have applauded the law, the 36,000 local residents are angry. The city has already banned animal testing, cat declawing, and the sale of cats and dogs in pet stores.
Stop mold growth by using an old toothbrush dipped in mouthwash to clean and sanitize grout in the bathroom…also, let a ¼ cup of it sit in your toilet for 30-minutes, swish around with a brush and flush.
PM’s Compendium of Useful Resources
Food is vital in any emergency. After all, disaster frequently cuts people off from groceries and other sources of food. It is important that you keep an emergency food supply. However, you can’t just dump any sort of food. Here are some tips on how to gather food for an emergency:
1) Non-perishable – make sure that the food you get is non-perishable. This means the food should not rot quickly. Emergencies and disasters often cut off electricity, so you won’t have any means to keep perishable foods fresh. Try getting some canned or dried foods, as these keep the longest.
2) Non-cook – while in an emergency, you can hardly think about cooking, especially considering that you might not have access to gas or electricity. Buy food that’s ready to eat.
Again, canned goods are great for this sort of thing. You should also think about getting some beef jerky, dried fruit and other bits of food you can readily munch on.
3) Energy content – the main reason you need an emergency food supply is because you’re body will need energy in order to cope with the stress of any disaster. Your body will specially need it if you are injured or ill.
Did you know that candy bars were first produced for soldiers to get a quick energy boost if needed? Having energy will allow you to react better to the situation around you.
New options for frugal consumers.
Sites include www.Plumdistrict.com (“a Groupon for Moms”), www.Saveology.com, www.Signpost.com
Sites include www.Plumdistrict.com (“a Groupon for Moms”), www.Saveology.com, www.Signpost.com
Community Scale Biofuel Systems
Good news for ethanol folks…Blume Distillation will be offering turnkey alcohol systems to market in 2012, designed for entrepreneurs, farmers and communities to produce their own fuel. Prices are expected to start at $35,000.
City Farming Blog
No matter how small or urban of space you might have, Mike Lieberman blogs to help you grow your own food to become more self-sufficient. Recent posts include: Small space gardening that’s affordable, How to Make a Self Watering Container and more…
Practice Firing Range
Make a suitable firing range at your camp or farm by choosing a spot against a hill if possible. Make a frame and supports of two inch by four inch lumber against a ½ inch steel plate. The front should be of painted board against which the paper targets are set. Sand is place in a box in the middle. The number of targets will depend on the size of the range you have selected.
A Pinch of Petroleum Jelly dabbed just inside the opening of your nostrils can help catch pollen before it enters your nasal passages, says Dr. David Rosenstreich, direct of allergy and immunology at Montefiore Medical Center in NYC.
Household tips for surviving the recession
Here are a few ways that a very practical home improvement editor saves money on home products:
Things I don’t ever buy: Plastic bags and plastic food containers. After years of spending on “Tupperware” that I inevitably let mold in the back of my pickup truck, I stopped spending on plastic. I reuse containers and bags. I invested in about eight large sturdy plastic food containers, the type that caterers use. They’re almost indestructible. I use those (and wash them out religiously) and actually purchase food for the container (juice in a glass jar vs. juice in a plastic bottle). I use glass juice jars for everything from freezing soup to using them as flower vases. I save plastic shopping bags and use them as garbage bags -- therefore I don’t ever buy garbage bags. Don’t knock it ’til you try it.
Something else I don’t ever buy: Paper towels and disposable plates and flatware. They’re expensive and take landfill space. I have a bunch of cheap dish towels that work fine. The one exception I make is paper napkins, and only if company is coming over. A pack of 500 paper napkins costs about $2.50 and lasts for months.
I don’t buy toilet paper. This sounds crazy and maybe sounds like I have bad hygiene habits. Don’t worry -- I buy bulk packs of tissues instead. Toilet paper is really expensive. At my local market, a 12 pack of toilet paper costs about $15. Since I don’t like flushing money down the toilet (heh), I figured out that a large pack of generic “Kleenex” actually lasts longer and costs less.
I use soap and water to clean almost everything. My house, my body, my hair -- you name it. I have cheap, bulk dish soap in the kitchen and bar soap in the bathroom. For extra house cleaning and laundry cleaning power, I mix vinegar and cheap bottled lemon juice (and I save the bottle -- you’re getting the idea now) into the soap and water.
Protect outdoor furniture from rust by cleaning it prior to storing. After drying, wipe a couple of thin coats of car wax which will give it a protective coating.
The Nanny State Updates…
Cash strapped municipalities step up bogus fines and fees…
In addition to collecting property, sales and income taxes, some have put in place separate streetlight fees... fire hydrant fees... and new booze taxes. Nevada is even considering a new $5 surcharge on prostitution.
Anthony Fasolino, a third-generation proprietor of a pizzeria in the Bronx. Fasolino was recently fined $600 for the head-slapping offense of...allowing rainwater from his parking lot to flow into the storm sewers.
Fasolino figures such bogus fines -- $200 for a missing cover on a ceiling light was another recent one -- eat up as much as 20% of his revenue.
"New York City is unleashing its latest financial hell on cash-strapped business owners," reports the New York Post, "desperately stepping up fines and announcing a flurry of new fees to raise funds." The city is counting on such fees and fines for $900 million in revenue.
The Federal Reserve wants to know what you are saying about it. In fact, the Federal Reserve has announced plans to identify "key bloggers" and to monitor "billions of conversations" about the Fed on Facebook, Twitter, forums and blogs. This is yet another sign that the alternative media is having a dramatic impact. As first reported on Zero Hedge, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York has issued a "Request for Proposal" to suppliers who may be interested in participating in the development of a "Sentiment Analysis And Social Media Monitoring Solution". In other words, the Federal Reserve wants to develop a highly sophisticated system that will gather everything that you and I say about the Federal Reserve on the Internet and that will analyze what our feelings about the Fed are. Obviously, any "positive" feelings about the Fed would not be a problem. What they really want to do is to gather information on everyone that views the Federal Reserve negatively. It is unclear how they plan to use this information once they have it, but considering how many alternative media sources have been shut down lately, this is obviously a very troubling sign.
You can read this "Request for Proposal" right here
Safely pick up broken glass shards by using a moistened slice of bread to wipe up the glass.
The Parting Thought – Getting prepared for the worst to come
If you haven't spent the last two or three years preparing, then we'd recommend you get into high gear right now. Not tomorrow. Not next week, but Now.
The world as we have come to know it, in one way or another, is going to crumble over coming years. It may happen overnight in a rapid waterfall collapse, or it may deteriorate over several years. Regardless of how it happens or exactly how long it takes, we're running out of time and the outcome will be the same. In The Redline: A Tale of Collapse, Brandon Smith depicts a scenario that may not be too far off from what reality will look like in America in the not too distant future.
Suffice it to say that if you want to avoid, or at least insulate yourself from, living in a world of poverty, violence, and despair, consider how you can become more self reliant today.
What will you do if commerce stops due to a currency collapse and the banks are closed- how will you buy food, medicine and bare essentials?
Can you grow your own food or raise micro livestock?
Do you have the ability to protect yourself at home or in public?
What skills do you bring to the table that will be of use when the service industry in America collapses -- what are you capable of producing?
How prepared are you to sustain your family in the event of a hyperinflationary or hyperdeflationary collapse -- what will you use to pay your monthly mortgage and bills if traditional currencies collapse or you lose your primary income stream?
Yours in freedom, the Poor Man.
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