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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Safer well water, Fixing wells, Reusing sink water saves cash

Bruce’s Poor Man Survival Bulletin

A Digest of Urban Survival Resources

ISSN 2161-5543

In This Issue:

1.       When to test your well water system

2.      Reuse sink water to flush-save 6000 gallons annually

3.      Where to hide your money

4.      Simple, portable backyard grill and fireplace

5.      Safe water in emergencies resources

Water, taken in moderation, cannot hurt anybody.
Mark Twain

Private Drinking Water Wells - Keeping your H2O supply safe

Ground Water and Drinking Water

Emergency storm preparedness to help protect your drinking water supply and wastewater disposal systems.
Major storms and hurricanes can result in flooding. What should you do to protect your drinking water?

If your family gets drinking water from a private well, do you know if your water is safe to drink? What health risks could you and your family face? Where can you go for help or advice?

The information contained in this web site will help you answer these questions.

EPA regulates public water systems; it does not have the authority to regulate private drinking water wells. Approximately 15 percent of Americans rely on their own private drinking water supplies, and these supplies are not subject to EPA standards, although some state and local governments do set rules to protect users of these wells. Unlike public drinking water systems serving many people, they do not have experts regularly checking the water’s source and its quality before it is sent to the tap. These households must take special precautions to ensure the protection and maintenance of their drinking water supplies.

Basic Information - Learn about the types of drinking water wells and guidelines for proper construction.

Where You Live - Find information about private drinking water wells in your region or state.

Frequent Questions -This page answers questions you may have about your well water.

Human Health - Learn about health risks associated with drinking water wells.

Partnerships - Several organizations are working to keep private drinking water wells safe.

What You Can Do - Learn how to do your part in keeping your drinking water well safe.

Publications -Download or order copies of brochures, booklets, posters, reports, and multi-media publications. 

Major storms and hurricanes can result in flooding. What should you do to protect your drinking water?

The Safe Drinking Water Information System (SDWIS) contains information about public water systems and their violations of EPA's drinking water regulations, as reported to EPA by the states. These regulations establish maximum contaminant levels, treatment techniques, and monitoring and reporting requirements to ensure that water systems provide safe water to their customers.

You may select systems either by locating systems within a geographic area or by entering the water system ID number. For more detailed information about the water you drink, contact your local water supplier directly or call your state drinking water agency. To find the phone number for your state's drinking water agency, click here or call the Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 1-800-426-4791.

For national and state-by-state information, please see the Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water's drinking water facts and figures page.

Safer, non-slip surfaces can be made easily by mixing sand with paint (mix right into your roller pan) and coat steps, docks and more.

PM’s Compendium of Useful Resources

When should I test my well water?

Our well water smells a tad bit funky.  It’s possible it’s due to lack of regular use or there are contaminants in it.  I bought a test kit on eBay for $20 to be sure…I also picked up some filtration systems to use on our faucets.

There are several tests that, if done periodically, can help owners of private wells determine whether they have safe, clean drinking water. Periodic testing will confirm the quality of your well water. State well construction code requires that new wells be tested before use. You should consider testing anytime you notice a change in odor or taste.

In the worst case situation, you may have to apply a shock chlorination treatment (as described in the last resource link below).

Maintenance of your well system

The Paratrooper's Water Purifier removes 100% of harmful, water-borne bacteria such as:


Staphyloccus aureus

Salmonella typhi

Vibrio cholerae

Legionella pneumophila

This personal filter completely removes other contaminants from your water too. Dust, algae, and other particles you don't want to drink are filtered right out! The Paratroopers Water Purifier also significantly reduces the concentration of heavy metals in your water, leaving you nothing but the freshest tasting water that's clean and clear.

Not only does it works FAST.

You won't sit around waiting for this little filter to do its job. The
Paratrooper's Water Purifier filters an entire liter of water in just three minutes. Even better, you won't have to think about replacing the filter on your Paratrooper for a long, long time. It will filter up to 2,000 liters of water before the filter needs to be replaced.  Learn more here:

Or check out this mini-straw filter, ideal for camping

 How to Hide Money

The following ideas on how to hide money are not foolproof. An experienced thief can find almost any hiding place if he has enough time. Fortunately speed is important to a thief, and there are ways to slow him down. Better yet, there are even ways to convince him to leave before looking everywhere.

First, avoid the obvious places which are always checked, like under the mattress, in dresser drawers, closets, and small safes (the safe will be taken whole, to be opened later). A list of better places can be found below.

But as part of your plan to convince a thief to leave, some of your money should be relatively easy to find. Why? Because, as thieves will tell you, they are going to tear apart your home until they think they have found the bulk of the money and valuables available. Even though they are in a hurry, they don't want to...

Reuse Sink Water for Flushing-Saves 6000 Gallons

Interesting device from the Aqus folks that installs in your bathroom sink in about an hour and works with gravity fed toilets.  Captures used bathroom sink water and routes it to your toilet saving the average two-person household 6000 gallons of water annually.  Priced around $190 - Learn more at:

Simple Backyard Grill and Fireplace

We already had a nice large burn pit circle, metal lined built in the center of a large concrete patio.  It’s a simple matter to stack concrete block in a circular fashion around the pit along with recycled grill racks.  We also picked up a tri-pod with hanging grill rack which can be used in a pinch (from a garage sale for $1).  Since the standard concrete blocks aren’t cemented, they’re easily moved.

Quick n easy home- made soft scrub for no-scratch cleaning - Mix 1 cup baking soda with some warm water to make a paste plus a few drops of liquid soap.  Apply to surface and let it sit for a few minutes, then scrub with non-abrasive sponge and rinse.

The Nanny State Updates…

In the 21st Century, the biggest threat to our personal freedom and liberty, our economy and our middle class is the federal government.  --The Poor Man

Big Brother Regularly Ignores the Constitution and Bill of Rights

If you regularly carry a cell phone around with you, you might as well say goodbye to your privacy. The truth is that any cell phone you buy is going to track you wherever you go 24 hours a day. Just as you leave "footprints" wherever you go on the Internet, so also your cell phone is constantly recording wherever you go in the physical world. Most people do not realize this, but the reality is that cell phones are tracking devices that governments, law enforcement authorities, big corporations and even stalkers can use to easily track your movements. If you do not know about this yet, then you are going to be absolutely amazed by what you are about to read. Not only do cell phones track you wherever you go, they can also be used to listen to your private conversations even when they are turned off.

The FBI can remotely activate the microphone on your cell phone and listen to whatever you are saying....

The FBI appears to have begun using a novel form of electronic surveillance in criminal investigations: remotely activating a mobile phone's microphone and using it to eavesdrop on nearby conversations.

The technique is called a "roving bug," and was approved by top U.S. Department of Justice officials for use against members of a New York organized crime family who were wary of conventional surveillance techniques such as tailing a suspect or wiretapping him.

The reality is that the NSA has been monitoring all phone calls for years and years. According to USA Today, the NSA intends "to create a database of every call ever made"....

The National Security Agency has been secretly collecting the phone call records of tens of millions of Americans, using data provided by AT&T, Verizon and BellSouth, people with direct knowledge of the arrangement told USA TODAY.

The Parting Thought – Fixing Idiocy in Washington

Warren Buffett on debt ceiling …worth repeating!

Warren Buffett, in a recent interview with CNBC, offers one of the best quotes about the debt ceiling:

"I could end the deficit in 5 minutes," he told CNBC. "You just pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible for re-election

The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds) took only 3 months & 8 days to be ratified! Why? Simple! The people demanded it. That was in 1971...before computers, e-mail, cell phones, etc.

Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took 1 year or less to become the law of the land...all because of public pressure.

Warren Buffet is asking each addressee to forward this email to a minimum of twenty people on their address list; in turn ask each of those to do likewise.

In three days, most people in The United States of America will have the message. This is one idea that really should be passed around.

Congressional Reform Act of 2011

1. No Tenure / No Pension. A Congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.

2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security. All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.

3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.

4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

5. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.

7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void effective 1/1/12. The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen. Congressmen made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their term(s), then go home and back to work.

If each person contacts a minimum of twenty people then it will only take three days for most people (in the U.S.) to receive the message. Maybe it is time.


Yours for “the next revolution”, the Poor Man

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 A Shallow Planet Production

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Feds use GPS to Track Non-Criminals, Uses for Foil, USPS Broke

Bruce’s Poor Man Survival Bulletin

A Digest of Urban Survival Resources

ISSN 2161-5543

In This Issue:

1.       Unusual uses for aluminum foil

2.      Post Office going broke – raising rates again

3.      Feds using GPS to track non-criminals, Avoid transaction tracking

4.      Economists predict 2012 and 2013 to be worse

"The difference between a welfare state and a totalitarian state is a matter of time."
-- Ayn Rand

Postal System Going Broke

With all the woes following our Postal System, I thought you might find this interesting…

Do you know the amazing story of Lysander Spooner? He lived from 1808 to 1887. His first great battle was taking on the post office monopoly. In the 1840s, he was like most people at the time: fed up with the high prices and bad service. But as an intellectual and entrepreneur, he decided to do something about it. He started the American Letter Mail Company, and his letter business gave the government some serious competition.

It opened offices in major cities, organized a network of steamships and railroads, and hired people to get the mail to where it needed to be. His service was both faster and cheaper than the government’s own. Then he published a pamphlet to fight the power: “The Unconstitutionality of the Laws of Congress Prohibiting Private Mails.” It was brilliant. It rallied people to his side. And he made a profit.

The government hated him and his company and began to litigate against him. It dramatically lowered the price for its services, and used public money to cover its losses. The goal was to bankrupt Spooner, and it eventually succeeded. Spooner’s private postal system had to be shut down

Spooner didn’t go away. He was more than an entrepreneur. He was a brilliant and pioneering intellectual, as the collection The Lysander Spooner Reader makes clear. He was a champion of individual liberty and a passionate opponent of all forms of tyranny.

Spooner advocated what he called Natural Law – or the "Science of Justice" – wherein acts of initiatory coercion against individuals and their property were considered "illegal" but the so-called criminal acts that violated only man-made legislation were not.

Spooner spoke plainly: what you call the Constitution has no authority to take away my rights. Hence his famous essay: “Constitution of No Authority.” In “No Treason” he argues that the state has no rights over your freedom of speech. In “Vices Not Crimes,” he shows that people in any society are capable of doing terrible things but the law should only concern itself with aggression against person and property. Reading them all together, as they are in this book, is a radicalizing experience — a liberating experience. It makes you see the world in a completely different way.

You can order the book here:

To remove grease from clothes: Empty a can of Coke
into the load of greasy clothes, add detergent, and run
through a regular cycle. The Coca-Cola will help loosen
grease stains. It will also clean road haze from your

PM’s Compendium of Useful Resources

USPS Announces New Rates, Priority Mail to Rise over 3 Percent
The USPS will raise Priority Mail rates by 3.1 percent overall in
January, is introducing a new larger Priority Mail Regional box,
a new Express Mail Flat Rate Box, and is adding a new Package
Intercept service. EcommerceBytes breaks it down!

Transactional Databases
Most of your daily purchases are tracked, stored and searchable by just about anyone who wants to know about your spending habits. Find out how you are tracked and how to avoid it.

Buy solar panels
Interect Inc. is a wholesale distributor of solar systems and provides solutions for
on- and off-grid applications

Aluminum Foil - A good kitchen friend

Aluminum foil saves a ton of clean up time and has many wonderful uses which we’re sharing here.

Sharpen your scissors. In between professional sharpenings (or for those 99 cent pairs of scissors that you don’t want to pay to have sharpened), use aluminum foil to keep your scissors in top form. Cutting through 6-8 layers of aluminum foil will improve the cutting surface of most scissors.

Shine up rusty chrome. With a bit of water on a wadded-up piece of aluminum foil, you can rub most rust spots off of chrome car parts.

Keep your oven clean. Tired of scraping burned-on food out of the bottom of your oven? Line it with aluminum foil before making something particularly messy. Don’t leave it in there permanently, however, because it can lead to oven damage over time.

Make your soap last longer. Put a piece of aluminum foil on the bottom of your bar of soap to keep it from sitting in a puddle of water and wearing away quickly

Keep birds out of your fruit trees. Hang twisted strips of aluminum foil all over your fruit trees using fishing line. The light reflections and the sound will keep birds away from your fruit.

Re-soften hard brown sugar. Many people put hard brown sugar in the microwave to soften it up, but this can actually backfire and make the sugar harden even more. Instead, wrap the block of hardened sugar in some aluminum foil and bake in a 300° (Fahrenheit) oven for 5 minutes.

If your TV and DVD player are stacked one on top of the other, you may find the picture is a bit fuzzy. This often happens when the electromagnetic fields from both devices interfere with each other. Place a sheet of aluminum foil between them to cut down on the interference.

Reflect heat into your house. Put a layer of aluminum foil behind your radiator when it is off and completely cool. When the radiator is turned on, more of the heat will be directed into the living area and less will be absorbed into the wall behind the radiator.

Make a solar cooker. You’ll cut down on energy costs and experience a traditional way of cooking.

Makes great gift wrapping paper in a pinch and can be decorated as you wish.

To prevent stuck on food in my baking pans and cookie sheets, I will line them with foil. It cuts down on cleaning time and leaves my pans looking just as good as they did when they went into the oven. Rinse off the sheets if they are not to disastrous and save them for another baking session, or rinse them off and put them in your recycling bin.

The Nanny State Updates…

When the federal government first began putting naked body scanners into airports and began implementing "enhanced pat-downs" of travelers, many warned that hordes of sicko perverts would start applying for jobs with the TSA. Well, it turns out that one TSA employee is now being charged with a nightmarish sexual assault. The following is how WJLA in Washington D.C. describes what he is being charged with....

The suspect, Harold Glen Rodman, 52, allegedly was wearing his uniform and displayed a badge to the victim, a 37-year-old woman.

Police arrested Rodman on Nov. 20. He is charged with aggravated sexual battery, object sexual penetration, forcible sodomy and abduction with intent to defile.

The federal government has become so paranoid that they have been putting GPS tracking devices on the vehicles of thousands of people that have not even been charged with committing any crimes. The following is a short excerpt from a recent Wired magazine article about this issue....

The 25-year-old resident of San Jose, California, says he found the first one about three weeks ago on his Volvo SUV while visiting his mother in Modesto, about 80 miles northeast of San Jose. After contacting Wired and allowing a photographer to snap pictures of the device, it was swapped out and replaced with a second tracking device. A witness also reported seeing a strange man looking beneath the vehicle of the young man’s girlfriend while her car was parked at work, suggesting that a tracking device may have been retrieved from her car.

Then things got really weird when police showed up during a Wired interview with the man.

The young man, who asked to be identified only as Greg, is one among an increasing number of U.S. citizens who are finding themselves tracked with the high-tech devices.

The Justice Department has said that law enforcement agents employ GPS as a crime-fighting tool with “great frequency,” and GPS retailers have told Wired that they’ve sold thousands of the devices to the feds.

Melt sidewalk is by spreading a generous portion of sand mixed with baking soda over the walk and steps.  It won’t stain or damage concrete surfaces.

The Parting Thought – Time is running out

"In 2002 it was bad, in 2008 it was worse and 2012 or 2013 is going to be worse still – be careful"

Willem Buiter, chief economist at Citigroup: "Time is running out fast. I think we have maybe a few months -- it could be weeks, it could be days -- before there is a material risk of a fundamentally unnecessary default by a country like Spain or Italy which would be a financial catastrophe dragging the European banking system and North America with it."

The federal government is now over 15 trillion dollars in debt. During the Obama administration so far, the U.S. government has accumulated more new debt than it did from the time that George Washington took office to the time that Bill Clinton took office.

There is already talk that we may soon see another downgrade for U.S. debt. It is hard to even describe how incompetent the U.S. Congress is.

Yet, the idiots who run the country continue along with stupid regulation that stifle job creation and cost Americans a lot of time and money…Most of the big regulatory agencies of the federal government have totally gone crazy. For example, the EPA is now specifically targeting Americans that use traditional wood-burning stoves.

No progress will be made on the economy until we rid ourselves of these anti-citizen, red-tape strangling policies.

If you have not recently read the Bill of Rights, it is well worth your time to review it. It begins with the truths the authors believed were self-evident. For instance, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

The remainder (and majority) of the document is a list of crimes and offenses committed by the British government, many of which are being committed by our government today. Among the reasons given for the necessity of "dissolving the political bands" that had tied the colonies to Britain:

"For imposing taxes on us without our consent."

"For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us" and "for protecting them from punishment for any murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these states."

For obstructing trade, perverting justice, and carrying out "the works of death, desolation, and tyranny."

In a nutshell, is the definition of patriotism: allegiance to one’s own gatekeeper, affection for one’s oppressor?

Yours for “the next revolution”, the Poor Man

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 Keep our services free, visit our sites…

Check our Resources

New self sufficiency books added weekly

 A Shallow Planet Production