The Provident Prepper: Long Term Food Storage

This article from The Provident Prepper talks about calories and nutrition in your long term form storage and what sort of effects deprivation can cause. Long Term Food Storage: Creative Solutions to Build a Critical Asset

Long term food storage is a vital tool to help you conquer challenges that come your way in everyday life, as well as for emergency preparedness. This stockpile of life-sustaining long term storage foods should be built once you have a 3 month supply of foods that you eat everyday stashed in your pantry.

How do I build the perfect long term food storage plan for my family?

  1. Develop a plan that includes the number of people, unique dietary preferences, and takes into consideration minimum caloric needs.
  2. Prepare a cool, dry location to store your food supply.
  3. Search for reputable suppliers where you can purchase foods specifically packaged for long term storage at reasonable prices.
  4. Begin to implement your plan and consistently stock up on long term food supplies until you reach your goal.

We are going to begin by investigating important basic principles, looking at what the experts are recommending, and then taking a peek at how real people are using a bit of creativity to develop a long term food storage program that works for them.

Basic Caloric Requirements

USDA average caloric recommendations are 2000-2500 calories per day which is between 15-26 servings of food each day. We have been programmed to think that calories are bad. Calories are critical for energy and to maintain health. Let’s use the example of a 150 pound man. We have calculated to include physical activity and dietary thermogenesis. Generally the caloric requirements for a man to maintain a 150 pound weight is:

  • Inactive Male Adult – 2,360 calories
  • Average Male Adult – 2,722 calories
  • Active Male Adult – 3,176 calories

Depending on the scenario, a disaster may result in a normally inactive man having to significantly increase activity level resulting in a higher caloric requirement. When planning your basic longer term food storage, be sure to include enough supplies to meet the caloric requirements of each member of your family.

Minnesota Semi-Starvation Experiment

During World War II thousands of people died daily of starvation. The University of Minnesota conducted a clinical study to determine the physiological and psychological effects of severe and prolonged dietary restriction. They wanted to simulate a severe famine in a controlled laboratory environment and be able to assist famine victims.

36 Civilian Public Service male volunteers were selected to enable a detailed study of the physical and psychological effects of prolonged, famine-like semi-starvation on healthy men and their ability to recover from the experience. During the 24 week semi-starvation period, the caloric intake was cut to 1,560 calories a day consisting of a diet including; potatoes, rutabagas, turnips, bread and macaroni. The diet was rich in carbohydrates and poor in proteins. Subjects were required to walk 22 miles per week.

The results of the study clearly demonstrate that a male adult that consumes only 1,560 calories a day will have significant physical and psychological difficulties. They consistently found the following symptoms in test subjects;

  • Increased depression, hysteria and hypochondriasis
  • Severe emotional distress
  • Preoccupation with food
  • Social withdrawal
  • Decline in concentration, comprehension and judgement capabilities
  • Reduction in body temperature, respiration and heart rate
  • Edema in extremities
  • No energy
  • Always cold

One interesting thing noted is that all food was reported to be delicious with no evidence of diet fatigue. Many of the subjects would add water to the food to make it more like a soup to help make them feel full.

Calorie Calculations

One of the take home messages from this study is to make sure you factor basic caloric requirements into your basic food storage plan. Not all grains are equal when it comes to calculating calories. Wheat at 1520 calories per pound has less calories than white rice at 1650 calories per pound. It doesn’t look like a big deal until you multiply it out and see the difference

  • 300 lbs wheat = 456,000 calories = 1,249 calories a day for 1 year
  • 300 lbs white rice = 495,000 calories = 2,007 calories a day for 1 year
  • 300 lbs black beans = 461,400 calories = 1,264 calories a day for 1 year

Boxes of #10 cans can easily fit under a twin bed. We have found that 12 cases of 6 cans will fit nicely. That 72 cans of dry goods will come close but will probably not have quite enough calories to feed one person for an entire year without supplementation.  However, if it is used to supplement a 3 month supply of everyday foods stored in a pantry, or garden fresh fruits and vegetables, it would be perfect and bring the total caloric intake in line with basic requirements.

Continue reading “The Provident Prepper: Long Term Food Storage”

Tenth Amendment Center: The Virginia Declaration of Rights

Setting a Foundation: The Virginia Declaration of Rights from the Tenth Amendment Center discusses how the Virginia Declaration of Rights, which was passed around the time that the Declaration of Independence was beginning to be written, was a basis for both the Declaration and the much later Constitution.

On June 12, 1776, the Virginia House of Burgesses passed the Virginia Declaration of Rights. It is arguably the most important founding document that most people have never heard of.

The Virginia Declaration of Rights laid the groundwork for both the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution. Most significantly, the first three sections establish the philosophical framework that supports the entire U.S. system of government.

It declares that “all men are by nature equally free and independent and have certain inherent rights,” that “all power is vested in, and consequently derived from, the people,” and that “the community has an indubitable, inalienable, and indefeasible right to reform, alter, or abolish [government], in such manner as shall be judged most conducive to the public weal.”

These ideas were later reflected in the Declaration of Independence.

History

Months before the 13 colonies approved the Declaration of Independence, Virginia was already operating as a free and independent state. The colonial governor fled in January 1776 after the burning of Norfolk. In his absence, the Governor’s Council (the upper house of the colonial legislature) and the House of Burgesses dissolved themselves into a Convention under the authority “of the people” and assumed control over colonial affairs.

On May 15, 1776, the Convention declared Virginia a free and independent state “absolved from all allegiance to, or dependence upon, the Crown or Parliament of Great Britain. The resolutions included three action steps — drafting a declaration of rights, drafting a constitution, along with establishing confederated relationships with the other colonies and treaty relationships with other countries.

Historian Kevin Gutzman wrote that the entire process drew from precedents set during Britain’s Glorious Revolution.

“Self-consciously following the example of Britain’s Glorious Revolution, in which the Declaration of Rights had been the condition of William and Mary’s joint assumption of the English monarchy, the Virginians put their fundamental statement of political principles first, and then adopted the constitution that would implement it.  Virginians thought of their colony as independent from that point.”

The Convention formed a committee headed by George Mason to draft the declaration of Rights.

Mason drew from and expanded on existing English political thought. A close reading of the declaration reveals influences including the English Bill of Rights (1689) and the writings of John Locke.

He begins by establishing the philosophical foundations of government, including separation of powers, and then outlines several specific individual rights, including many that were reflected in the U.S. Constitution’s Bill of Rights. The document affirms the right to a jury trial, protection from excessive fines and bail, a ban on general warrants that authorize searches without “facts,” freedom of the press, and the subordination of the militia to civil authority.

James Madison penned the final article, declaring that “religion, or the duty which we owe to our Creator, and the manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force or violence; and therefore all men are equally entitled to the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience.”

The Convention adopted the Virginia Declaration of Rights on June 12, 1776.

Gutzman writes, “The influence of the Virginia Declaration of Rights would be hard to exaggerate.”

“Many of its provisions were used in other states.  Thomas Jefferson, helping Frenchmen draft their Revolution’s Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen, saw to it that some of the Virginia provisions were essentially translated into that document.  From France, their language made its way into the charters of several francophone countries, and eventually into the United Nations’ version.  From there, it would be transplanted into yet more countries’.”

A Revolution of Thought

In fact, the Virginia Declaration of Rights reflected a revolution in thought. It turned the established British conception of government on its head.

When people today talk about the American Revolution, they generally mean the fight with England. But there was a more fundamental revolution that began long before the first shot was fired and ultimately drove the American colonists to seek independence – a revolution of thought that radically altered the conception of sovereignty. The Virginia Declaration of Rights articulated these ideas.

In an 1818 letter to Hezekiah Niles, John Adams described the American Revolution in just such terms.

“But what do we mean by the American Revolution? Do we mean the American war? The Revolution was effected before the war commenced. The Revolution was in the minds and hearts of the people; a change in their religious sentiments of their duties and obligations. … This radical change in the principles, opinions, sentiments, and affections of the people, was the real American Revolution.”

This fundamental change in thought relates to the concept of sovereignty – the question of who holds the ultimate power and authority within a political society.

In the British system, the “King in Parliament” was considered sovereign. In effect, Parliament was sovereign with the king serving as the arm to put its power into action.

In the years leading up to the Revolution, Americans started to question this conception of political power. They began to think of a constitution as something that exists above the government. The colonists began to reject the idea that government formed the constitution and instead conceived of the constitution as something that binds government. They used these kinds of constitutional arguments when challenging British authority, asserting they had longstanding, well-established constitutional rights that the King and Parliament were violating.

We see this shift in the first several articles of the Virginia Declaration of Rights, particularly Section 2, declaring:

“That all power is vested in, and consequently derived from, the people; that magistrates are their trustees and servants and at all times amenable to them.”

This was reflected in the Declaration of Independence.

 “To secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

The Declaration of Rights makes clear the importance of firmly stating our principles and placing limits on government. The question then becomes, how do you enforce them?

Rutherford Institute: US Gov. Waging Psychological Warfare on the Nation

John and Nisha Whitehead at the Rutherford Institute writes Everything Is a Weapon: The U.S. Government Is Waging Psychological Warfare on the Nation. One note, when the author talks about cryptocurrency being used for government surveillance, not all cryptocurrencies allow for that kind of tracking. In fact, most cryptocurrencies were designed to provide privacy. On the other hand, cryptocurrencies that are sponsored by the government, banks, or large tech companies are often designed specifically to provide that kind of surveillance and tracking of money.

Have you ever wondered who’s pulling the strings? … Anything we touch is a weapon. We can deceive, persuade, change, influence, inspire. We come in many forms. We are everywhere.”— U.S. Army Psychological Operations recruitment video

The U.S. government is waging psychological warfare on the American people.

No, this is not a conspiracy theory.

Psychological warfare, according to the Rand Corporation, “involves the planned use of propaganda and other psychological operations to influence the opinions, emotions, attitudes, and behavior of opposition groups.”

For years now, the government has been bombarding the citizenry with propaganda campaigns and psychological operations aimed at keeping us compliant, easily controlled and supportive of the police state’s various efforts abroad and domestically.

The government is so confident in its Orwellian powers of manipulation that it’s taken to bragging about them. Just recently, for example, the U.S. Army’s 4th Psychological Operations Group, the branch of the military responsible for psychological warfare, released a recruiting video that touts its efforts to pull the strings, turn everything they touch into a weapon, be everywhere, deceive, persuade, change, influence, and inspire.

This is the danger that lurks in plain sight.

Of the many weapons in the government’s vast arsenal, psychological warfare may be the most devastating in terms of the long-term consequences.

As the military journal Task and Purpose explains, “Psychological warfare is all about influencing governments, people of power, and everyday citizens… PSYOP soldiers’ key missions are to influence ‘emotions, notices, reasoning, and behavior of foreign governments and citizens,’ ‘deliberately deceive’ enemy forces, advise governments, and provide communications for disaster relief and rescue efforts.”

Yet don’t be fooled into thinking these psyops (psychological operations) campaigns are only aimed at foreign enemies. The government has made clear in word and deed that “we the people” are domestic enemies to be targeted, tracked, manipulated, micromanaged, surveilled, viewed as suspects, and treated as if our fundamental rights are mere privileges that can be easily discarded.

Aided and abetted by technological advances and scientific experimentation, the government has been subjecting the American people to “apple-pie propaganda” for the better part of the last century.

Consider some of the ways in which the government continues to wage psychological warfare on a largely unsuspecting citizenry.

Weaponizing violence. With alarming regularity, the nation continues to be subjected to spates of violence that terrorizes the public, destabilizes the country’s ecosystem, and gives the government greater justifications to crack down, lock down, and institute even more authoritarian policies for the so-called sake of national security without many objections from the citizenry.

Weaponizing surveillance, pre-crime and pre-thought campaigns. Surveillance, digital stalking and the data mining of the American people add up to a society in which there’s little room for indiscretions, imperfections, or acts of independence. When the government sees all and knows all and has an abundance of laws to render even the most seemingly upstanding citizen a criminal and lawbreaker, then the old adage that you’ve got nothing to worry about if you’ve got nothing to hide no longer applies. Add pre-crime programs into the mix with government agencies and corporations working in tandem to determine who is a potential danger and spin a sticky spider-web of threat assessments, behavioral sensing warnings, flagged “words,” and “suspicious” activity reports using automated eyes and ears, social media, behavior sensing software, and citizen spies, and you having the makings for a perfect dystopian nightmare. The government’s war on crime has now veered into the realm of social media and technological entrapment, with government agents adopting fake social media identities and AI-created profile pictures in order to surveil, target and capture potential suspects.

Weaponizing digital currencies, social media scores and censorship. Tech giants, working with the government, have been meting out their own version of social justice by way of digital tyranny and corporate censorship, muzzling whomever they want, whenever they want, on whatever pretext they want in the absence of any real due process, review or appeal. Unfortunately, digital censorship is just the beginning. Digital currencies (which can be used as “a tool for government surveillance of citizens and control over their financial transactions”), combined with social media scores and surveillance capitalism create a litmus test to determine who is worthy enough to be part of society and punish individuals for moral lapses and social transgressions (and reward them for adhering to government-sanctioned behavior). In China, millions of individuals and businesses, blacklisted as “unworthy” based on social media credit scores that grade them based on whether they are “good” citizens, have been banned from accessing financial markets, buying real estate or travelling by air or train.

Weaponizing compliance. Even the most well-intentioned government law or program can be—and has been—perverted, corrupted and used to advance illegitimate purposes once profit and power are added to the equation. The war on terror, the war on drugs, the war on COVID-19, the war on illegal immigration, asset forfeiture schemes, road safety schemes, school safety schemes, eminent domain: all of these programs started out as legitimate responses to pressing concerns and have since become weapons of compliance and control in the police state’s hands.

Weaponizing entertainment. For the past century, the Department of Defense’s Entertainment Media Office has provided Hollywood with equipment, personnel and technical expertise at taxpayer expense. In exchange, the military industrial complex has gotten a starring role in such blockbusters as Top Gun and its rebooted sequel Top Gun: Maverick, which translates to free advertising for the war hawks, recruitment of foot soldiers for the military empire, patriotic fervor by the taxpayers who have to foot the bill for the nation’s endless wars, and Hollywood visionaries working to churn out dystopian thrillers that make the war machine appear relevant, heroic and necessary. As Elmer Davis, a CBS broadcaster who was appointed the head of the Office of War Information, observed, “The easiest way to inject a propaganda idea into most people’s minds is to let it go through the medium of an entertainment picture when they do not realize that they are being propagandized.”

Weaponizing behavioral science and nudging. Apart from the overt dangers posed by a government that feels justified and empowered to spy on its people and use its ever-expanding arsenal of weapons and technology to monitor and control them, there’s also the covert dangers associated with a government empowered to use these same technologies to influence behaviors en masse and control the populace. In fact, it was President Obama who issued an executive order directing federal agencies to use “behavioral science” methods to minimize bureaucracy and influence the way people respond to government programs. It’s a short hop, skip and a jump from a behavioral program that tries to influence how people respond to paperwork to a government program that tries to shape the public’s views about other, more consequential matters. Thus, increasingly, governments around the world—including in the United States—are relying on “nudge units” to steer citizens in the direction the powers-that-be want them to go, while preserving the appearance of free will.

Weaponizing desensitization campaigns aimed at lulling us into a false sense of security. The events of recent years—the invasive surveillance, the extremism reports, the civil unrest, the protests, the shootings, the bombings, the military exercises and active shooter drills, the lockdowns, the color-coded alerts and threat assessments, the fusion centers, the transformation of local police into extensions of the military, the distribution of military equipment and weapons to local police forces, the government databases containing the names of dissidents and potential troublemakers—have conspired to acclimate the populace to accept a police state willingly, even gratefully.

Weaponizing fear and paranoia. The language of fear is spoken effectively by politicians on both sides of the aisle, shouted by media pundits from their cable TV pulpits, marketed by corporations, and codified into bureaucratic laws that do little to make our lives safer or more secure. Fear, as history shows, is the method most often used by politicians to increase the power of government and control a populace, dividing the people into factions, and persuading them to see each other as the enemy. This Machiavellian scheme has so ensnared the nation that few Americans even realize they are being manipulated into adopting an “us” against “them” mindset. Instead, fueled with fear and loathing for phantom opponents, they agree to pour millions of dollars and resources into political elections, militarized police, spy technology and endless wars, hoping for a guarantee of safety that never comes. All the while, those in power—bought and paid for by lobbyists and corporations—move their costly agendas forward, and “we the suckers” get saddled with the tax bills and subjected to pat downs, police raids and round-the-clock surveillance.

Weaponizing genetics. Not only does fear grease the wheels of the transition to fascism by cultivating fearful, controlled, pacified, cowed citizens, but it also embeds itself in our very DNA so that we pass on our fear and compliance to our offspring. It’s called epigenetic inheritance, the transmission through DNA of traumatic experiences. For example, neuroscientists observed that fear can travel through generations of mice DNA. As The Washington Post reports, “Studies on humans suggest that children and grandchildren may have felt the epigenetic impact of such traumatic events such as famine, the Holocaust and the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.”

Weaponizing the future. With greater frequency, the government has been issuing warnings about the dire need to prepare for the dystopian future that awaits us. For instance, the Pentagon training video, “Megacities: Urban Future, the Emerging Complexity,” predicts that by 2030 (coincidentally, the same year that society begins to achieve singularity with the metaverse) the military would be called on to use armed forces to solve future domestic political and social problems. What they’re really talking about is martial law, packaged as a well-meaning and overriding concern for the nation’s security. The chilling five-minute training video paints an ominous picture of the future bedeviled by “criminal networks,” “substandard infrastructure,” “religious and ethnic tensions,” “impoverishment, slums,” “open landfills, over-burdened sewers,” a “growing mass of unemployed,” and an urban landscape in which the prosperous economic elite must be protected from the impoverishment of the have nots. “We the people” are the have-nots.

The end goal of these mind control campaigns—packaged in the guise of the greater good—is to see how far the American people will allow the government to go in re-shaping the country in the image of a totalitarian police state.

The facts speak for themselves.

Whatever else it may be—a danger, a menace, a threat—the U.S. government is certainly not looking out for our best interests, nor is it in any way a friend to freedom.

When the government views itself as superior to the citizenry, when it no longer operates for the benefit of the people, when the people are no longer able to peacefully reform their government, when government officials cease to act like public servants, when elected officials no longer represent the will of the people, when the government routinely violates the rights of the people and perpetrates more violence against the citizenry than the criminal class, when government spending is unaccountable and unaccounted for, when the judiciary act as courts of order rather than justice, and when the government is no longer bound by the laws of the Constitution, then you no longer have a government “of the people, by the people and for the people.”

What we have is a government of wolves.

Our backs are against the proverbial wall.

“We the people”—who think, who reason, who take a stand, who resist, who demand to be treated with dignity and care, who believe in freedom and justice for all—have become undervalued citizens of a totalitarian state that views people as expendable once they have outgrown their usefulness to the State.

Brace yourselves.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People and in its fictional counterpart The Erik Blair Diaries, “we the people” have become enemies of the Deep State.

Stuck Pig Medical: Partisan Life Saver Course, Oct 21-23

Learning TCCC at Fairchild AFB

Stuck Pig Medical will be offering its Partisan Life Saver course in Spokane, WA on October 21-23, 2022. Stuck Pig Medical usually offers its courses at the Brushbeater training site in North Carolina, so it is rare to have one out here in Washington. Sign up and pay for the class through the Stuck Pig Medical store part of their website – CLICK HERE. If you’re really serious about some medical training, you can join the second tier of Stuck Pig Medical’s Patreon and have access to twice-weekly, live-streamed, medical classes of one to two hours in length for a cost of about $15 per month. Sign up early before all of the spots are gone.

Partisan Life Saver: $600
A three-day course that is the next step up from the TCCC course. The TCCC course is not a prereq for this. Covers everything that is covered in the basic course, but goes more in-depth on the subject. This is a wet course, which means fake blood is used, bring clothing that you don’t mind being potentially stained.

Topics covered:
*Why TCCC is important
*How to treat battlefield/trauma wounds
*What interventions should you get
*How to pack an IFAK
*How to make things to practice with

Everything is provided for the class, if there is something specific you want to try out, feel free to bring it to class.

If you order an IFAK or Bleeder Kit in conjunction with this, put in the notes if you want it shipped to you, or if you would rather just pick up the kit(s) when you show up for class.

Tactical Wisdom: Being Ready – Nehemiah

The following comes from Joe Dolio’s Tactical Wisdom blog, Being Ready – Nehemiah.

When the Jews returned to Jerusalem with Nehemiah, they were returning to a destroyed city, completely surrounded by enemies. The lessons taught in the Book of Nehemiah are just as valid today in either a Without Rule of Law (WROL) situation, or even in everyday life.

Nehemiah 4:23 says “Neither I, nor my brothers, nor my men took off our clothes, each had his weapon; even when he went for water.”

This isn’t bad advice, no matter what century.

The point of the advice is to remain aware and ready to defend yourself at all times. This was referred to by the legend Jeff Cooper as “Condition Yellow”. It means remaining engaged and being aware of the people around you, your environment, and potential issues that may develop, rather than being distracted by your phone or daydreaming.

When I approach a commercial building, like a store or gas station, I glance through the door or windows first, then as soon as I enter I take in the whole scene, noting all potential exits. It only takes two seconds and could potentially save your life.

In a true WROL situation, this becomes even more important. Nehemiah’s admonition to always be armed takes on special significance in the wake of a natural disaster, mass quarantine, power grid failure, or economic collapse.

In urban areas, the average house has about 48 hours worth of food in it. After the ability to quickly restock food from the corner store has gone away, hungry people will get desperate and remaining armed at all times can be the difference between safety and injury, or worse.

In that situation, you and your team should be fully armed and in “full kit” (sidearm, fixed blade knife, long gun, spare ammunition, and RADIO) at all times. When sleeping, be clothed, like Nehemiah suggests, with all your gear within arms reach. Luke 11:21 says “When a strong man, fully armed, guards his house, his possessions are safe.”

I also recommend highly the “3 Blade Rule”. You should always have available in everyday carry (EDC) and on your body in a WROL situation, 3 blades. First, a folding blade knife, which can be carried in a pocket for EDC or on your gear otherwise. Second, some type of multi-tool. For EDC, my Gerber Suspension and my Gerber M600 are in my laptop bag and in WROL, they have pouches on my web gear. The third blade is a full-size fixed blade knife. For EDC, the fixed blade knife is in my “Emergency Egress” backpack in the rear of my SUV (I carry either a Gerber LMF Infantry or my trusty USMC Ka-Bar). With these three blades, you can solve nearly any emergency, self-defense, or survival need.

As far as EDC carry of a firearm, Nehemiah said they carried their weapons everywhere, even to get water and it’s solid advice. There is no purpose is obtaining a Concealed Pistol License and then not carrying a pistol. I recommend carrying whatever your EDC gear is, whether it’s a handgun or a knife (and it should be both) everywhere that you legally can. You can’t possibly predict when evil or flawed ideology will touch your life, so it’s your responsibility to always be ready.

One more point about EDC: Whether or not you choose to arm yourself for EDC, you should ALWAYS carry a first aid kit. If you do choose to lawfully carry a firearm or knife, you MUST carry a first aid kit. Carrying first aid supplies really isn’t hard and can save lives in any emergency. I’ll do a full post on these, but here’s a recap of what I carry and where:

  • Laptop bag: Ziploc bag of various band-aids, some gauze, a pressure bandage (for gunshot wounds or any penetrating trauma), a tourniquet, and a CPR mask/gloves.
  • Emergency Egress Backpack: Full kit with band-aids, wipes, antibiotic, gauze, pressure dressings, triangular bandage, Cellox, EMT shears, gloves, CPR mask.
  • Trunk of SUV: Full Size med kit with multiple pressure dressings, tourniquet, band-aids of every size, combine pads, gauze, triangular bandages, tape, wipes, antibiotic, conforming bandage, EMT shears, minor medications, CPR mask, and gloves.
  • IFAK (moves between bags): Full kit like above, but also with Cellox for blood clotting.

The first aid kits may seem to be a bit much, but I’ve been blessed to be able to help injured people at accident scenes many times in my life. Having the right gear and never needing it is FAR better than needing the gear and NOT having it.

Thanks for reading!

John Robb: The War for the Future

Information war – PHOTO BY: Dr. Ernest Gunasekara-Rockwell

John Robb is a United States Air Force Academy graduate, working counterterrorism with the US Special Operations Command and continuing to write books and research in the areas of military theory and resilient communities. Robb also is a technical expert on technology trends including the Internet and social networks. In The War for the Future, John Robb discusses the third world war which you are currently, probably unknowingly, taking part in.

World War 3 is a guerrilla information war with no division between military and civilian participation. Marshall McLuhan 1968

The western world is now engaged in a guerrilla information war, and it’s a guerrilla war where everyone is a participant, whether they know it or not. We can see evidence of this war all around us.

  • We saw it in the sudden, unexpected, and potentially catastrophic mobilization for a global war with Russia after it invaded Ukraine.
  • We see it in the efforts to control online speech, the war on misinformation, and the disconnection of politicians.
  • We see it in the increasing distrust of institutions and experts.

This is an online war to decide who controls the western technosphere — an environment of interconnected technological artifacts that most of the world is now living within.

What does control of the network technosphere provide the winner? It provides the winner with the ability to:

  • to set and strictly enforce standards of speech and behavior of billions, both online and offline (increasingly).
  • to direct or redirect public debate and political discourse (either to solve problems or control outcomes).
  • implement sweeping social change on a global scale using online incentives, control over information flows, and draconian punishments (the ability to disconnect dissenters).

Let’s explore this a bit.

The Network Technosphere

We don’t live in a physical environment anymore.

  • We now live inside a networked technosphere. A world operated and controlled by interconnected technologies. While the environment provides us with new capabilities, it has complexified the challenges (from terrorism to financial collapse to COVID) we face, making them difficult to solve using traditional methods.
  • The technosphere envelops and immerses us from the moment we wake up until we go to sleep. In most cases, our ability to utilize it effectively determines our success or failure, both economically and socially. In short, we’ve become so dependent on it.
  • Our immersion has altered us. It’s rewiring our brains in ways we don’t fully comprehend, from processing information to relating to others, and that rewiring is driving changes in the way we organize our society.

Swarm vs. Horde

The antagonists in this war consist of people who have responded to this rewiring differently. One network seeks cohesion, consensus, and collective action, and the other wants to leverage the network to maximize individual and local autonomy. Here’s some detail:

  • The cohesive network swarm seeks to impose a strict secular orthodoxy over the west. It engages in moral warfare to coercively align people, corporations, and governments with influence over the technosphere into alignment.
  • The disorganized network horde seeks to prevent the swarm from imposing its orthodoxy through disruptive dissent. It uses the leverage provided by the network to mount disruptive attacks that actively erode support for the swarm’s alignment.
  • This war will rage on until one side wins or we develop a method of networked decision-making that incorporates the strengths of each approach into an integrated whole.

Let’s dig into the details of each.

Coercive Alignment (The Swarm)

The network swarm wants to tame the technosphere by using it to aggressively eliminate everything they see as a threat (racism, sexism, colonialism, fascism, etc.). When it sees a threat, it rapidly mobilizes (using empathy triggers) to amplify the danger posed by the threat and gain (or coerce) support for network controls to prevent it from reoccurring in the future.

Online, the swarm fights through moral warfare. It does this by using the network to amplify the menace of new threats — which creates widespread fear and anxiety — to force people to act cohesively and forcibly (usually by imposing limits and restrictions) to oppose it1. The more threatening the danger, the larger and faster the response. The moral axis of the swarm has three parts:

  • Equalization. “We can only be free when we are equal in every way.” The elimination of all power differentials between individuals, from wealth to weapons ownership to social status. Example: “Gun owners put us all at risk.” Equity: equality of outcome. Restorative justice: compensation for groups that have suffered historical inequality through forced restitution (by those in privileged groups) and enhanced opportunities.
  • Transhumanism. The need to transcend the human condition’s limitations, tyranny, and weaknesses. Transsexualism (LGBTQ….) is merely the tip of the iceberg. Transhumanism also radically transforms human relationships (friendship, family, sex, etc.). Transhumanism isn’t just an option; it’s a moral imperative. NOTE: Transhumanism will accelerate with the advent of augmented reality (AR).2 AR allows people to change how they are perceived.
  • Safeness. “An injury to one person is an injury to all of us.” No damage or injury is morally permissible if due to human action or inaction and must be prevented, regardless of the costs or limitations on freedoms involved. Injuries range from death to a loss of self-esteem/image. Injuries caused due to power differentials (privilege) or opposition to transhumanism are seen as existential threats and/or unmitigated evil.

Disruptive Dissent (The Horde)

The horde’s goal is to slow, alter, or prevent the establishment of a restrictive online orthodoxy. It spontaneously forms in response to encroachment. Disruptive dissent is usually only cohesive when it mobilizes to protect a superempowered individual who has the ability to hold the Swarm at bay (Trump, Musk, etc.).

Online, the horde fights in the psychological realm through maneuver and fast transients (quickly changing topics)3. It does this to disrupt, disorient, and overload the swarm’s thinking ability. Unlike the swarm, the horde is motivated by underlying factors that energize human behavior. These include:

  • Autonomy. Freedom of mind and body. To be allowed to think, speak and act differently, particularly in opposition to the prevailing wisdom—the ability to take significant or dangerous risks and occasionally be wrong. Autonomy is only restricted when those actions would cause tangible and considerable harm to others (a high bar).
  • Localism. A desire for control over the local environment (the physical offline reality). The ability of individuals, families, and communities to think, behave, and operate differently than what the present consensus mandates — which often manifests as a focus on family (formation), religion (local moral standards), and community (the rules). Opting out of global standards is prized both individually and collectively.
  • Dissimilarity. Reverence for differences in human beings due to innate characteristics (intelligence, strength, gender, upbringing, etc.), those achieved through status-seeking behaviors (wealth, bodybuilding, knowledge, experience, etc.), and choices (owning guns, religious beliefs, etc.). In short, they believe that seeking differences is a good thing.

We’ll get into how this war will play out in a future report.

Sincerely,

John Robb

Kunstler: Your Show of Shows

Another Congressional clown show started this morning.

Author James Howard Kunstler discusses today’s Congressional committee inquiry into the January 6th protests in Your Show of Shows.

The unravelling of the USA gets its summer steroid booster shot this Thursday when the political twerk-fest known as the January 6th Select Committee commences prime-time televising of its inquiry into the so-called “insurrection” the day that Congress met to tally the 2020 electoral college vote when hundreds of protesters entered the US Capitol illegally, egged on and enabled by a squad of FBI plants larded through the crowd, and by shadowy figures inside the building who unlocked the doors for them.

The objectives of this extravaganza are A) to soften up the remaining “purple” voters before the midterm election, B) to paint former president Donald Trump as an instigator of the uproar and an enemy-of-the-people so he won’t be able to run for office again, and C) to punish former White House employees and Trump partisans with onerous legal fees so as to knock them off the political game board.

The Party of Chaos certainly doesn’t need to reinforce the mass formation psychosis of its base who maintain that the 2020 election was the fairest-and-squarest in US history. The committee members will chant the talismanic phrase “The Big Lie” ad nauseam to ward off reasonable suspicions that they are the ones doing the lying. Since a kind of maniacal stupidity attends all the party’s doings these days, it could easily backfire on them. Even two years later probes are still pending in several swing states, and only a few weeks ago, the documentary 2000 Mules released time-stamped videocam footage of blatant wholesale drop-box ballot-stuffing around the country.

Lawsuits filed lately also claim the committee itself is illegally constituted, since House Speaker Nancy Pelosi disallowed (against the rules) the minority Republicans from appointing their own chosen members. Instead, she did it for them, planting the vehemently hostile rogues Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger on it, meaning no witnesses will be called who might refute pertinent details of the “insurrection” narrative already constructed. Much of the testimony presented will be videotaped interviews with Trump White House officials and there will be no accounting for what may be edited out. In other words, you have an obvious setup for a star chamber, a device for disregarding individual rights and fair procedure.

The context, of course, as I aver above, is a country that is imploding six ways to Sunday — to paraphrase Chuck Schumer, the Party of Chaos’s Senate leader. At least half the public is already onto the extravagant damage inflicted upon our national life by the beneficiaries of the 2020 election. Thanks to “Joe Biden,” the dollar is hemorrhaging value, we instigated a war in Ukraine that will lead to global famine and mass refugee events, oil and natgas are unaffordable thanks to our destabilizing of global distribution networks, spare parts are unavailable for every imaginable machine in the land, the business model for farming is broken, real estate is groaning under rising mortgage interest rates, the CDC is still pushing Covid vaccines despite proof that they are ineffective and harmful, cities are overwhelmed with criminal violence and psychotic homeless drug fiends, and, as a final indignity — actually, an advertisement to the world of our depraved weakness — the US military is hosting drag queen shows at our European air bases.

Are these the circumstances that American voters are expected to endorse in the November election when all these conditions are liable to get a lot worse? Apparently, the Party of Chaos thinks so, since they’re delivering exactly what they stand for. And yet, they’re clearly nervous about it, as if they suffer fugitive doubts that we-the-people are avid for cultural and economic collapse.

My advice, then, is to take the televised January 6th hearings for the grand entertainment it’s intended to be. Enjoy the sob stories of the Capitol Police officers pretending to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder. Behold the terrible “threat to our Democracy” of the bare-chested interloper in a horned helmet chatting-up security guards in the Senate chamber. Note the “insurrectionists” taking seditious selfies in statuary hall and trying to fob off with souvenir furnishings. See Rep. Liz Cheney fulminate with scorn and disgust against her orange nemesis. Sympathize with committee Chair Bennie G. Thompson as he bangs his gavel and cries for order when any live witness utters the name Ashli Babbitt. Watch Rep. Adam Kinzinger turn on the waterworks. Take it all in and ask yourself: who exactly seeks to subvert this republic of ours?

RealClear Politics: Why Uvalde Doesn’t Justify Gun Control

Frank Miele, author and former editor of the Daily Inter Lake, writes Why Uvalde Doesn’t Justify Gun Control.

The deaths of 21 people, including 19 children, at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, are a nightmare that I can’t even fathom. It is pure evil.

Yet millions of Americans seem prepared to accept this nightmare as the new normal. They don’t ask what could turn an 18-year-old boy into a monster who could look innocent children in the face and shoot them to death while dozens others were screaming, while blood splattered and puddled in the classrooms, while his own life ticked down to its final meaningless minute. They just assume there are more like him – waiting, planning, marking time, ready to do the unthinkable.

And their proposed solution is to take guns away from law-abiding American citizens on the assumption that evil people will be deterred from doing evil if they can’t obtain (take your pick) either long guns or handguns (or both).

Why do I get the feeling these presumably well-intentioned people don’t know what evil is? Don’t they realize that mass murder is never normal? Perhaps more importantly, why do they think that the government can hinder evil by passing new laws that will restrict gun ownership?

The crisis isn’t that children kill other children with guns; the crisis is that children want to kill other children with guns. And more broadly, there is a moral crisis in our country because we teach children that right and wrong are no longer absolutes, that they are rather subjects for debate. And the more we debate right and wrong, the more that evil gains a foothold in our society.

But it is easier to talk about guns than it is to talk about evil. It is easier to blame guns than it is to blame our sick society for what happens to our children. If you want to prevent mass murder, the answer isn’t to take guns out of classrooms; it is to put God back in classrooms, and to fearlessly teach children about good and evil, about right and wrong, about the basis for our laws and our civilization. A society that is unwilling to acknowledge a higher power is unlikely to have any answers for children who question authority.

Even if we can’t reverse the secularization of America, there are steps that can be taken to improve public safety without restricting gun rights.

If you want to prevent psychotic teenagers from acting out their dreadful fantasies, for instance, try providing mental assistance when they make threats to kill people. Even better, don’t prescribe dangerous psychotropic drugs that can result in hallucinations, paranoid delusions, mood swings, depression, and “abnormal” thoughts. Those are all listed side effects for Adderall, one of the most commonly prescribed drugs for teenagers with behavioral problems.

Instead of taking guns away from people who have never even contemplated committing a crime, how about this? Pass laws that make it a felony to threaten violence against children or to threaten random violence in public places. Then prosecute those crimes and lock up the people who are deemed a threat by a jury of their peers. Don’t do what the California state Senate just did and vote to remove the requirement that police be notified when students make threats against a school official. That is just plumb crazy.

Of course, reliance on the police to solve all our problems is also crazy.

That is the logical fallacy at the heart of the argument of would-be do-gooders like Beto O’Rourke who want to grab your guns. Think about it. They are asking us to turn our safety (and our children’s safety) over to the care of law enforcement when it was law enforcement that let us down at Uvalde. From the video and testimonial evidence, it appears that police were called to the scene of the massacre quickly and then waited. Waited while children died. Waited while children were risking their lives by making 911 calls to beg for help. Waited. For more than an hour. Waited. Until finally Border Patrol officers took matters into their own hands and shot the demon.

Do you see the irony? The people of Uvalde trusted the government to protect their children, and children perished. But give one parent a gun at Uvalde and there’s at least a 50/50 chance he or she would have ambushed the shooter and killed him. And the more law-abiding people who have guns, the better off the rest of us will be when crazed shooters decide to go on a killing spree.

Unfortunately, too many people looking for easy solutions want to take guns out of the hands of citizens and put all the power for our protection in the hands of government. That goes against our lived experience, not just at Uvalde but in society overall. In case after case, we the people have been conditioned to believe that the government is incapable of protecting us from criminals.

Consider the summer of 2020 when our cities were burning and mobs were rampaging in state after state. What did the government do to protect us? Nothing. They decided it was safer to let the mobs riot, to let the looters loot, to let the fires burn – perhaps because they were afraid they would be “defunded” if they actually fought to protect citizens from dangerous criminals. Gun owner Kyle Rittenhouse decided to try to protect Kenosha, Wisconsin, and he was arrested and charged with murder for his trouble.

Moreover, in city after city, Democratic prosecutors have decided it is easier to let criminals go than to send them to jail. This crusade against “mass incarceration” is also known as sweeping the dirt under the rug. The problem isn’t that too many people are in jail; the problem is that too many people commit crimes. Left-wing prosecutors like George Gascon in Los Angeles are adding fuel to the fire by releasing criminals back into society without punishment, thus giving them incentive to commit more crimes. Refusing to prosecute gun crimes guarantees that more guns will be used in crimes.

And let’s not forget the most glaring example of the government abdicating its responsibility to protect the public from criminals – Joe Biden’s open border. How many millions of people have to enter our country illegally before you lose confidence in the government to do its job? Well, I’m well past that point. Like millions of other Americans, I don’t trust the government. Can you think of any reason why I should, when the Department of “Homeland Security” not only allows unvetted immigrants into the country illegally but then flies them to their preferred destination? It’s that same government, by the way, which says that people like me (i.e., Republicans) are domestic terrorists and would like nothing better than to lock us up just like King George wanted to lock up those unruly colonists who insisted on something called “liberty.”

Joe Biden wants to suspend the Constitution and deny American citizens the right to bear arms of their choice. Of course he does, because it is the easiest answer to a complicated problem, and because it would consolidate power in the hands of the government. Last week, Biden spoke earnestly and forcefully to a prime-time audience and told us that the shooting at Uvalde was enough, that no more innocent people need die if we just turn over our guns. Coincidentally, an hour before Biden spoke, I was watching an episode of the TV series “Alex Rider,” where these frightening words were spoken:

“From Facebook data to Internet oversight, what we can see is that if your message is strong enough, you can take away people’s liberties, and they will applaud you for doing it.”

Unfortunately, such a message is not just fiction. Consider yourself warned.

For a more amusing argument:

Jack Lawson’s Review Of The Tactical Wisdom Series 

Jack Lawson is the author of Civil Defense Manual and co-author of the older and now out of print A Failure of Civility. Here he gives a review of Joe Dolio’s Tactical Wisdom, another preparedness book series. All of the works above are worth your time. Jack’s books have a larger format with many photos and diagrams, while Joe’s are smaller with only text, but also may be written in more easy to read style.

Tactical Wisdom (2 Book Series)

Rare does a book catch my attention like Tactical Wisdom. It could have been authored by my alter ego. But the Author, Joe Dolio, has created what I consider a companion and must-read book to my book the Civil Defense Manual. His book “Tactical Wisdom TW-01 Baseline Training Manual” has almost every procedure in it that my book has… presented in a concise and superb manner. He also has a great writing style.

The man clearly must be a genius, if by his definition of the word, we think alike. For those unaware of what I’m talking about, you’d have to read Joe’s opening line in his review of my book. But Joe and I, regardless of our level of intelligence and I’m definitely not a genius, agree on the way to Preparedness, Survival and organizing with others for Strength Through Numbers for protection.

This review is not a ‘trade off’ knee jerk evaluation of the Tactical Wisdom Series from me because Joe wrote a generous review for me… because anyone who knows me well, knows that I won’t praise a poor presentation, incompetence and or misinformation for any reason. The fact is that this Marine Corps Veteran has written a classic in writing the “Tactical Wisdom Base Line Training Manual.”

I know that Joe is more intelligent than me by one item… as he quotes The Ultimate Base Line Book… the Bible… in his book. That incredible Guide Book that I’ve seemed to wandered away from… despite being brought up by it. Some people that know me would say… “Lawson, you reading the Bible!?”

Well, I am drifting back to the Bible and Christianity… probably from the insanity of what illogic is bringing our society. I am not reading it because “I’m looking for a loophole” for my transgressions, like W.C. Fields said when one of his friends questioned him astounded that he was reading the Bible on his death bed. I have a pretty good idea where I’m going… and it won’t be pretty… but I still hold out hope for Valhalla.

That being said, I believe our exclusion of God, his Son and the Holy Spirit by many ‘enlightened’ and ‘elite’ people is the basis of the on-going destruction of the fabric of society, decency, the family, Free Enterprise (instead of Fascist Corporations), Individual Rights and Constitutional America.

When the huge egos and twisted values of those who become legends in their own minds represents the aggregate essence of a world of peoples… in lieu of the righteousness and principles of an Immortal and Benevolent Higher Power… mankind is well on the way to catastrophe… if not extinction.

I have read just about every survival book out there. Good ones… and bad ones. Fiction and non-fiction… handbooks, manuals and riveting fiction plots… some with excellent common-sense survival information and storylines… and then there are those with the ‘expert’s fantasy’ on how to survive.

What started me off was the late British Author John Christopher’s 1957 science fiction novel “No Blade of Grass,” first published as “The Death of Grass,” and made into a movie in 1970. A post-apocalypse story where food crops fail, and the world descends into chaos.

But novels cannot convey to you all the necessary methods and explain all the critical information on Preparedness and Survival no matter how good a story they are. However, novels will get you thinking in the right direction and sometimes point out stark issues that imaginations cannot conceive of in normal civility.

A case in point… William Forstchen’s “One Second After.” I said bull shytte when his story had 90% of Americans dying within one year after a High-altitude Electro Magnetic Pulse event (HEMP or EMP) happened. I retracted my words after reading the story and understanding why he would be correct in his assessment.

All the books you will read on apocalyptic events, Preparedness and Survival will give you basic, and in some cases extensive, information necessary to survive disaster and Catastrophic Events… however some will also give you and yours an early meeting with your Maker for inaccurate and erroneous information. Deadly.

But both fiction and non-fiction books on Preparedness and Survival create in you something critical… a valuable thought process that gives you a different perspective and understanding of the frailty of we humans on this planet.

And regardless… almost every book you read leaves you knowing something you didn’t know before you picked it up, if you check the accuracy of the information. Life is a process of learning… up to the second you pass from this world into the next.

What you’ll get in Tactical Wisdom Series is the solid information and procedures on what you must do to prepare for calamity and how to survive it. We both tell people what and how to do it, but Joe brilliantly puts a synopsis and summary at the end of each of his chapters called Base Line Standards.

I look at his Base Line Standards summary at the end of each chapter as the “get up and go… do it if you’re for real…” or don’t… if you’re an arm chair commando and couch potato. When I write a new edition of the Civil Defense Manual… I’ll do the same… put a summary of what people must do in ‘one-line sentences’ at the end of each chapter. A true motivator. A “Shytte… or get off the pot!” motivator.

I was astounded page by page in the similarity of Tactical Wisdom Base Line Standard ‘TW-01’ to the Civil Defense Manual. I haven’t finished Tactical Wisdom Fieldcraft TW-02 yet, but I will and will review that also.

This Marine Corps Veteran has also seen the boogeyman. That ‘qualification’ of combat experience alone does not convey a super mythical power that enables an author to write Preparedness and Survival books… but it does make you hyper-vigilant towards obvious and hidden threats… and creates a “what if mindset” from all the butt puckering of war like going through a hamburger grinder. Some people get this mental state without combat… but most people never do.

Like Robert Preston said in “The Music Man…” “There’s trouble in River City!” Only this trouble coming is real and is not a con job. You will live in exciting times in the next decades… make sure you have water to drink, food to eat and neighbors and friends to help protect you and your family… as well as you, them. Your “Tribe.”

Buy Tactical Wisdom and learn. I am excited that Joe plans to put out more in his series, as he indicates he will… books that will compartmentalize what each facet of Preparedness and Survival skills should teach you. I bought them and am learning from them… you should too.

Joe’s definitely a ‘get up and go’ type of guy with a visionary approach to Preparedness and Survival…

…so, my Base Line Standard advice to you is to ‘get up and go…’

First… get Joe’s books… read his “Tactical Wisdom Base Line Training Manual TW-01” …and start putting together your plan… but with his books’ guidance.

Out Front with Mike Shelby: How to Build Social Bases

In this video Mike Shelby, aka Sam Culper of Forward Observer and Grey Zone Activity, talks about building social bases, which are areas which are capable of resisting tyrannical rule, but such community mobilization and structure can also provide relief post disasters or catastrophes.

Off Grid Ham: Portable Antennas For The Off Grid Ham

Wire antenna. Courtesy ARRL.org

Chris Warren at Off Grid Ham has a nice, longish article on Portable Antennas For The Off Grid Ham. Please see Chris’s article on his site for the helpful antenna diagrams.

We’re not special.

Off grid amateurs spend a lot of time focusing on the power source for their equipment. While that’s understandable, we musn’t be distracted from the rest of the amateur radio chain. This time we’re going to look at the other end of the system: portable antennas.

To be clear, off grid radio does not require a “special” antenna. Any antenna that can be used for conventionally-powered operating can be used for off grid. Since most off grid radio is done in a portable/temporary/outdoor setting, or for survival/prepper/EMCOMM purposes, some antennas are more suitable than others. Operators who live in apartments, have HOA restrictions, spouse objections, or otherwise cannot have a permanently mounted antenna are in this mix too. Portable Antennas

It’s not practical to go over every possible option as there are dozens of them; we’ll cover the pros and cons of a few of the most popular. If you’re a newcomer to amateur radio, you’ll gain some focus about different antenna choices. At the end of this article I will include links to more detailed information.

A word about portability. Portable Antennas

The definition of “portable” varies considerably depending on who you ask. “Portable” can mean anything from a large trailer full of equipment to a handheld radio in a shirt pocket. It’s up to each individual operator to decide what works for them. Most of the antennas described in this article are not “portable” in the sense that one could back pack all day with it (along with all their other gear). They will all fit in an average car and can be hand carried short distances.

The classic random wire.

There is hardly anything simpler, less expensive, and easier to understand than the random long wire. This antenna has been around since the beginning of radio and is still used today. They can be made from any conductive wire and erected in any fashion…

If you’re going with a random long wire antenna, you’ll need a separate antenna tuner. The integrated antenna tuners on modern radios will not likely be enough. You can try it and you might get lucky, but very few internal antenna tuners have enough range of correction to get a random wire down to the 50 ohm load the radio requires. I have an external tuner that feeds an unun with a ground plane wire for my random wire antenna; that modified setup works well plugged into my FT-817. Portable Antennas

The tradeoff for ease & simplicity is inefficiency. The antenna tuner does not “fix” this problem. Whatever losses are inherent to your random wire will still be there.

Other random wire considerations.

You’ll also have to consider that random wires are not self-supporting. How do you plan on getting your antenna off the ground? You can bring a PVC pipe or telescoping mast but lugging it along that may not fit with your definition of “portability”. Another option is to run your random wire up to a tree. That too may be problematic. Is there a suitable tree at your operating site? Be aware that many public parks in the United States prohibit attaching anything to the trees, even temporarily.

Some hams advise cutting the wire to be a certain length, or to avoid a certain length. This is done to make the antenna work better across all the bands. That’s fine, but then it’s not really a “random” wire. This may seem like semantic nitpicking  but if you are going to cut a wire to a specific length you may as well take it all the way and make a proper end fed or dipole antenna. My wire antenna truly is random; I have no idea exactly how long it is. For all its faults, random wires really do work, and there’s no beating the low cost and simplicity.

The magnetic loop. Portable Antennas

The magnetic loop is one of the most beloved and hated antennas in all of hamdom. I’m not sure why, but every time it comes up in conversation, strong opinions fly back and forth.

Magnetic loop antennas are a conductive loop, a variable capacitor, and a smaller coupling loop. The loop can vary in size, with some versions having less than a three foot diameter. In spite of their small size and odd appearance, mag loops are quite effective. Magnetic loops do not require a tuner and are excellent for restricted space applications, such as apartments, motorhomes, etc. One of the big benefits of magnetic loops is they do not need to be mounted high off the ground. Any elevation greater than one loop diameter is just as good as mounting it on a 100 foot tower.

Magnetic loop disadvantages.

Mag loop antennas have narrow bandwidth. This has a lot to do with the “Q” value of the antenna, which in turn is related to the antenna’s small size, but that’s more than we’ll get into this time around. If you change your transmit frequency, even a little, the antenna will need to be re-tuned. Therefore, you will need easy physical access to the loop. There are commercially made mag loops such as the MFJ-1788 with a remote tuning head. It’s an expensive option, so consider your needs and wants carefully. Also, mag loops will have very high exposed voltages, even at low transmit power levels. Although it’s not necessarily dangerous, if you touch a mag loop while it’s energized, you’ll likely get a very memorable jolt! Keep it away from children, pets, and untrained bystanders.

If you prefer to build you own, the internet is full of plans and tips for DIY versions. By the way, the loop does not have to be a perfect circle, or even be a circle at all. Octagons and other shapes are acceptable. Portable Antennas

In my opinion, magnetic loop antennas are highly underrated. Once you learn its quirky ways it will provide excellent results.

Vertical antennas.

Commercially made portable vertical antennas might be the most popular antenna for off gridders. There are many choices: Buddistick, Alpha Antenna, Chameleon, and others. They generally do not require a tuner and will operate over numerous bands. Unlike mag loops, verticals maintain good bandwidth without constant adjustments. And unlike random wires, they do not take up much linear space when deployed. They’re easy to set up and take down and self supporting. There’s a lot to love here. I personally use an Alpha Antenna FMJ and I must say it delivers on its promises.

The main disadvantage is the cost. Commercially made portable antennas are pretty dang expensive for what you are getting. I realize a lot of the price tag is related to research & development expenses, plus the relatively low production runs of these products. Because portable antennas can be a serious financial commitment for the average operator, it’s important to do your homework and make sure you’re getting an antenna that is appropriate for your operating goals. Portable Antennas

Everything else.

There are so many other antennas that we can’t realistically go through them all here. Some of these antennas are quite effective, others not so much. Still others are just more complicated versions of well established designs. Experimenting is a big part of the fun, so don’t be afraid to take a chance. Home brew antennas are typically inexpensive and can be recycled into something else if they don’t work out.

Resources.

Here is an Off Grid Ham article from 2016 that goes into detail about random wire antennas, including notes on how to build your own.

This awesome database gives DIY plans for over four hundred antennas. It’s one of my favorite antenna resources and I highly recommend you bookmark this one.

This lengthy (33 page) PDF goes into deep detail about magnetic loop antennas, including operating theory. If you are or want to be a mag loop geek, this one’s for you!

Here’s another very well written and illustrated article about mag loops.

Here is a handy on line mag loop calculator if you want to take a stab at building your own.

The Villages Amateur Radio Club published this very well done guide to stealth antennas for those living in HOAs, apartments, etc.

Finally, an easy to understand explanation of antenna Q values. 

TACDA: Neighborhood Preparedness Webinar, Thurs. June 9th

TACDA is holding a webinar on Thursday, June 9th, 2022 at 5:00 pm Pacific (6pm MDT) on the topic Are We Ready? Neighborhood Preparedness. There are 45 minutes for the presentation and then fifteen minutes for questions.

Topic: Are We Ready?

Presenter: Sharon Packer

Sharon Packer has a bachelor’s degree in mathematics with a minor in physics, and a master’s degree in Nuclear Engineering. She has served on the TACDA board of directors for over 20 years in several different capacities. Sharon is an expert in civil defense and in NBC (Nuclear, Biological, Chemical) shelter design.

Date: June 9, 2022 6pm (Utah time)

Link: Click HERE to join the meeting. (Everyone invited to this meeting. No subscription required!)

Sharon will give us an overview of Neighbor helping Neighbor with the basics of emergency preparedness:

  • Nuclear threat
  • Food storage
  • Evacuation
  • First Aid
  • Power outages
  • Emergency Communications
  • Water storage
  • Sanitation
  • Neighborhood Watch
  • Alternative Energy

Live Zoom presentation will be on Thursday June 9th, and the recording will be available to watch by the following Monday.

Link for Recorded Zoom Presentation: Coming

Neighborhood Preparedness Plan: Click HERE

Regular Assembly, June 9, 2022

The next Regular Assembly will be held on Thursday, June 9th at 6:30 pm in The Patriot Barn, 22202 N Hinzerling, Prosser. We’ll be showing 2000 Mules, the Dinesh D’Souza documentary. After that we’ll work on the barter market, update on communications, and other preparedness topics.

Radio Contra Ep. 161 – Joe Dolio of Tactical Wisdom

In Radio Contra episode 161, NC Scout interviews Joe Dolio of Tactical Wisdom.

https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-7v4ba-123dc6c

Episode 161. I’m joined by Joe Dolio of Tactical Wisdom to break down the Uvalde shooting and discuss your responsibility as armed Americans for your own protection. Next we move into Russia’s next moves in Ukraine and westward, and what’s preparing to unfold in South America.