Regular Assembly of the Whole, June 14th, 2018

Please join us at the Patriot barn on June 14th, at 6:30 pm for an LVA barbecue. We will have a short business portion followed by food and fellowship. We ask that everyone bring a side dish and lawn chairs. BBQ chicken will be provided as well as dessert. Also please save the date of Tuesday, June 26th for the Center for Self-Governance screening of the Finicum documentary Dead Man Talking, with Lavoy’s widow Jeanette Finicum. We want to be an encouragement to both of them and their efforts.

Click here to download a printable agenda.

Keep Gov’t Local – Excerpt from “Human Scale Revisted”

On the ability of local communities to better respond to issues than state or federal government, from the book Human Scale Revisited by Kirkpatrick Sale:

To find the government as the root cause of such problems, of course, should not surprise us by now: it is in the nature of the state, we have repeatedly seen, to create the problems that it then steps in to correct and uses to justify its existence. But there is a further point to the process that is pertinent here; in the words of British philosopher Michael Taylor:

The state…in order to expand domestic markets, facilitate common defence, and so on, encourages the weakening of local communities in favour of the national community. In doing so, it relieves individuals of the necessity to cooperate voluntarily amongst themselves on a local basis, making them more dependent upon the state. Teh result is that altruism and cooperative behavior gradually decay. The state is thereby strengthened and made more effective in its work of weakening the local community.

This is important: it is exactly this that accounts for the inability of the Lake Michigan communities to regulate their pollution problems in the first place. Communities that were in control of their own affairs, whose citizens had an effective voice in the matters that touched their lives, would almost certainly choose not to pollute their own waters or to permit local industries to do so, out of sheer self-interest if not out of good sense — particularly if they were small, ecology-minded, economically stable, and democratically governed. (And if by some chance a community or two did go on polluting, resistant to all appeals, their toxic effects would likely not overstrain the lake’s ability to absorb them.) It is this process, moreover, that accounts for the failure of the concerned majority to have cleaned up the pollution once it existed. Individuals and communities conditioned to cooperative and federative behavior, particularly those whose interests are greatest (in this case fishing villages, towns with bathing beaches, beach clubs, marinas, lakefront hotels, boardwalk businesses), would almost certainly work out, and pay for, a way to restore the lake — especially if there were no federal or state governments to siphon off the locally generated money through taxation.

As with pollution, so with the other public services of the state. There is a not a one of them, not one, that has not in the past been the province of the community or some agency within the community (family, church, guild) and that has been taken on the state only because it first destroyed that province. There is not a one of them that could not be re-absorbed by a community in control of its own destiny and able to see what its natural humanitarian obligations, its humanitarian opportunities, would be. Invariably hen the state has taken over the job of supplying blood for hospitals, there is a shortage, even when it offers money; the United States now gets much of its blood from overseas. Invariably when a community is asked to do it voluntarily, and when the community perceives that the blood is to be used for its own needs, there is a surplus. This is not magic altruism, the by-product of utopia; this is perceived self-interest, community-interest, made possible (capable of being perceived by the individual) only at the human scale.

Indeed there is not one public service, not one, that could not be better supplied at the local level, where the problem is understood best and quickest, the solutions are most accessible, the refinements and adjustments are easiest to make, the monitoring is most convenient. If it be said that there is not sufficient expertise in a small community to tackle some of the complicated problems that come along, the answer is surely not a standing pool of federal talent but an appeal throughout neighboring communities and regions for a person or group who can come in to do the job. (This is in fact what the federal government itself most often does today, hence the great reliance on contract firms and $650-a-day consultants.) If it be said that some problems are too big for a small community to hand along (an epidemic, a forest fire, or some widespread disaster), the anser is clearly not the intervention of some outside force but the ready cooperation of the communities and regions involved, whose own self-interest, even survival, is after all at stake. And if it be said that there is not enough money in a small community to handle such problems — well, where do you suppose the government got its money in the first place, and how much more might there be in local pockets if $500 billion of it weren’t spent by Washington, $200 billion by state capitals, every year?

I cannot imagine a world without problems and crises, without social and economic dislocations demanding some public response. I see no difficulty, however, in imagining a world where those are responded to at the immediate human level by those who perceive the immediate human effects and control their own immediate human destinies.

FO with John Mosby on Building Tribe, Community and Preparedness

Sam Culper at Forward Observer interviews John Mosby, a former Army Special Operations soldier, small arms instructor, and author on building tribe, community and preparedness. Mosby writes at the Mountain Guerrilla blog, and is the author of The Reluctant Partisan Volumes I and II, and Forging the Hero.

 

NC Scout: Preparedness Groups and Community

From NC Scout, writing at American Partisan:

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From my angle, not suffering the myopia of many, the prepper movement seems to be rekindling. After the siesta many seemed to take after November 2016, a large number are waking up to the reality that no, your problems are not solved by simply voting and that no, they won’t be any time after. We can easily see that all of the same issues which motivated the many are still omnipresent- the shaky basis of our economy, the very real threat of domestic discord, and the increasing likelihood of terrorism or even a possible nuclear exchange. I can’t help but wonder if this is what the early 80s felt like. Coming of age in the 90s survivalists were far more concerned with the rise of globalism and the threat of domestic tyranny, listening to William Cooper on our Sony Shortwave receivers that we bought at Radio Shack. Those threats haven’t gone away, but what has changed for the good is the approach many are adopting to preparedness and survival compared to the past- embracing a small group and community model versus the inefficient and socially obtuse ‘lone wolf’ stereotype. Before anyone hisses at their screen while reading this, take a moment to reflect on some of the things that have been either written, filmed, or observed in the past few years. Look at the growth of all things survival, primitive living, or just asking for a simpler and more resilient lifestyle. What was once a fringe notion among social outsiders is now mainstream. Look at the resurgence of the ways of yore and the reembracing of simpler, more resilient and less wasteful lifestyles. The age of tradition is coming back, fueled in part by a need to reawaken those bonds with our past meanwhile recognizing the need for community. The days of the large family gatherings and community get-togethers seems to be returning, and its a welcome sight.

gummer.jpgRugged Individualism doesn’t negate the need for others. I think of myself as a fairly well rounded individual. I can build anything from a lean-to shelter to a radio shack. I can keep a person alive from trauma long enough to get them to a higher tier of care. I can communicate around the world with basic equipment, I can make accurate shots with a 7.62×51 past 1k meters, lead a combat patrol, fix my diesel truck, brew my own beer, hunt any game out there, and can make it into the best smoked sausage you’d want to eat. But those skills at a basic level only serve me. What of my family? What of yours? I have to sleep sometime. Who watches over you when the body or mind shuts down?

And that’s where the confusion comes in. The idea of the well rounded man, rugged individual, or as I like to call self starter, doesn’t mean you don’t need anyone else. Could I live like that, alone, in total isolation? Maybe for a little while, but it wouldn’t be much fun. Without others to share a good laugh, food, drink or the human experience with, what’s the point of ‘surviving’? Many of the libertarian mindset pride themselves on personal liberty, not being reliant on anyone else for anything and accountable to the self alone. While I share those views it cannot negate the reality that I cannot do all things alone nor would I want to. Specialization may be for insects, but we do all have our talents. Groups tend to coalesce around skills that add to the whole. And that brings us to how we stand up communities of preppers.

The first thing to recognize is that prepper groups are voluntary and should be based on respect and friendship…

Click here to read the entire article at AmericaPartisan.

Mosby: Courage Is a Choice; No One Is Coming to Save You

From John Mosby at Mountain Guerilla, Courage is a Choice -an essay about how to be courageous and not a coward.

I am going to discuss some things, from my own experiences and observations, that relate to this, in the context of the prepared citizen, recognizing our current position in the normal cycles of history.

To whit: courage is a choice. It has been said that courage is like the fuel tank on a vehicle, and eventually, if you use enough of it, you simply run out. I don’t know how perfectly accurate that is, but it is a good enough analogy for the moment. Here is the thing about that analogy though, and the point of this: like a fuel tank, you can refill the reservoir before it runs out—or even before it runs low. Running “out” of courage—especially in an occupation or role that demands physical and moral courage—is no different than running out of gas…it is a choice, and rather simply remedied, by topping off the tank regularly. If you read this blog regularly, I will take the liberty of assuming that you have chosen to identify yourself as someone who intends—when the time arises—stand to protect your innangarð, however you define it. This article is intended then, to discuss HOW we might make ourselves more ready to do so, without becoming niðings, when the moment comes.

I have previously written at least one article with Aristotle’s famed quote, “We become what we do,” as the title, and it is a line I have mentioned numerous times over the years in my writing. It is a core part of my personal philosophy on life, and has been since my grandfather said it to me decades ago, before I even knew who said it first (seriously, until I was in my thirties, I thought my grandfather had made it up.).

So, what does that have to do with the choice of courage? We are not born intrinsically courageous. If anything, our evolutionary biology programs us to be rather craven, into at least adolescence, as a survival mechanism. Due to our inherent physiological shortcomings as “hairless apes,” who lack fangs or claws, until we are old enough to manufacture and wield tools, natural selection has made it the role of the adults of our tribe/clan/pack/community, to protect us from harm.

For most of humanity’s existence, the majority of humans have understood that those “bumps in the night” are not just random noises. SOMETHING made those noises, and sometimes those things had claws, fangs, and a taste for the succulence of human flesh. It was understood that the role of any man who considered himself such, was to go out and hunt down and slaughter those things that might harm the young of his tribe or clan or community. It was the duty of every woman, no matter how domesticated she might be; no matter how happy she might be keeping the hearth clean and welcoming, to stand ready to pick up her husband’s extra shield and spear, and stand in the door of their hovel, hut, or fortress, and slaughter those beasts that came looking for the flesh of her offspring, when her husband was absent…

The problem in America, as with every other great civilization in history, is that we—like our forebears—abrogated that responsibility to a selected corps of “protectors,” in favor of doing less dangerous, “more rewarding” tasks like banking and arguing before a courtroom, fixing someone’s plumbing, or working on their computer problems. Even my farmer neighbors, those stalwart representatives of our yeoman agrarian past, when a predator stalks their livestock, are as likely to call in the game warden as they are to simply shoot, shovel, and shut up.

This then, is the most important lesson given the American people by the niðings of Broward County—and perhaps the only thing of worth they’ve done in their lives, if I had to guess—and it is one that many of us have been telling people for a very long time: no one is coming to save you. You are responsible for your safety, your family’s safety, and the safety of your community (and if you think any of those stand alone, then you are a fool).

How then, do we ensure that, when the bell tolls for us, we make the “right” choice, and choose courage over cowardice? We begin by ensuring we have filled the fuel tank, and then we top it off at regular intervals, rather than letting the needle ride the “E.” We choose courage—moral and physical—in our every activity, every day…

To continue reading at Mountain Guerrilla, click here.

Brushbeater: Better Things – Think Local; Act Local

NC Scout over at Brushbeater blog has this article out on taking action and working locally, Better Things, Or, Doing Versus Talking.  More people are waking to up to the realization that things just aren’t right in the world and feeling that they need to do something about it.

I know it’s all going straight to hell, it’s nothing new and it’s what many have been saying for a long, LONG time. We are a nation under Judgement. Don’t focus on the big picture. You can’t fix it. But you can fix your own situation locally. You can meet the good folks next door. You can meet the good folks raising their own food and selling it at the farmer’s market. You can meet the good folks owning the micro brewery and hosting the beer festivals. You can meet the guys testing the handloads at the range and swapping numbers. You can lane coach the couple struggling to zero that new AR while you’re at that range. You can talk to like-minded people on the radiowaves, like I do with my friends. You can go to church, even if it’s not ‘your’ denomination, just to meet people who live and do in your community. It doesn’t do anyone any good to simply read what they want to hear, channeling some useless venom that doesn’t do anything other than cause more of a problem- thus I stay above it, as do the wise. More often than not the stuff is written by people who can’t do, hence why they complain.

IMG_0410Get out there and do it, whatever it is. Stop making it a hobby and start making it a lifestyle. Take care of home and hearth along with your close ones, and don’t forget those close by. Even if you think they’re a lost cause, people will surprise you, with a lot more folks into this preper thing than you realize- with a lot of folks not calling it that. You can learn from them, and they you. And with every hurricane, earthquake or human disaster, more good people wake up. Those late to the game tend to prep even harder, because they’ve got even stronger motivation. Go drop a deer or two this fall, learn how to skin game, make sausage and fill a freezer without spending a bunch of money. Teach your kids the joy of eating wild. And while you’re at it, start figuring out ways to work independent of a grid- find out how folks did stuff back in the days before consistent power.

Click here to read the entire article

Mason Dixon Tactical: Fair Is Fair – Helping Your Community Is Job One

From the Mason Dixon Tactical blog, comes this article Fair Is Fair in which the authors lauds community groups (whether they call themselves a militia, a navy (Cajun navy), a brigade (Monster Truck Brigade) that have turned up to help out in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. While he has ridiculed such militia groups in the past, he points out that community support is the real reason such groups should exist. So they better be training for such roles.

Over the last week, we have seen people in Texas, the surrounding states and even other states in the U.S. come together and kick ass to help those who needed it the most. Whether they call themselves the “Cajun Navy”, the “Monster Truck Brigade”, or “Militia” (I don’t know if any group involved in these actual rescue operations called themselves “militia”, but the “militias” out there should take notice of what these guys did and apply it to what they train for), it doesn’t matter, because their deeds have spoken for them.

Fair is Fair post2

If you call yourself a “Militia”, but all you do is play war games in your multicams and plate carriers, you are missing the big picture. You guys actually being able to operate as an effective, offensive military force is slim and none (I’m not talkin’ about your ability to protect your group). Operating as an effective rescue and logistics support group however, is well within your abilities, and has been demonstrated a number of times over the last week.

Fair is Fair post4

Does your group have , or have access to buildings/areas to house victims of a natural disaster? Do you have the means to give them basic bedding while they are in that housing area? What about sanitation?

I have had a number of less than complimentary things to say about a large portion of the people out there that are calling themselves “militia” these days, but in this instance, fair is fair. There are groups that have stepped up in a big way to help with everything that is going on in Texas. Whether they call themselves “militia” or not, they are performing a function that should be the primary focus of those groups that use that title, because the bottom line is that they’re supposed to be there for their community, right?

Continue reading the article by clicking here

Hurricane Harvey: Whole Community Response

From The Christian Science Monitor, In all-hands-on-deck response to Harvey, lessons learned from earlier storms:, discussing the hybrid government/community/individual response to the disaster in Texas.

Ahead of the storm, there were questions about whether Texas-style self-reliance or a centralized, civil-defense-era response from the federal government should govern. But as an all-hands-on-deck response to historic floods has unfolded, the all-of-the-above support exemplifies something new, disaster experts say: a template for what the nation’s top emergency managers call “whole-community” response. It’s a dramatic shift since hurricane Katrina in how the United States prepares for natural disasters, encompassing everything from agency leadership in Washington to Mr. Sherrod and his sturdy compatriots from East Texas.

“I do think we’ve seen a change,” says University of Tennessee law professor Glenn Reynolds, author of “An Army of Davids,” in an email. “But the real difference isn’t citizens getting involved, it’s the willingness of responsible officials to see that involvement as a plus rather than a potential problem. I think the excellent record of civilian volunteer responders in the post-9/11 record is behind that willingness.”…

During Katrina, some rescuers literally had to sneak into the city to help. In Houston, the Cajun Navy has been part of a massive volunteer response, encouraged by officials. Twelve thousand National Guardsman also are being deployed, the government announced Monday.

The Cajun Navy represents both literally and figuratively the importance of neighborhood social networks – what researchers call “social capital” – that has become increasingly part of national response to disaster.

Click here to read the full article

A Night Out – Community Charity Event – Sept. 9th, 2017

Save the date and get ready to come out and support your community at this charity fundraising event.

Saturday, September 9th, 2017
Yellow Rose Nursery, Prosser

Award Winning pouring wineries, breweries & distilleries

Gourmet Dinner, Music & Dancing

Live and Silent auction benefiting the NW Community Foundation

This is one of Washington Wine Country’s premier charity events, hosting over 450 guests from across the Northwest. Last year’s event was a huge success because of people like you who gave generously of their finances, products, services and time.

Join us at our Wine Country Gala reception and Silent Auction along with award winning wineries, NW Micro Breweries, & Hors d’oeuvres in the stunning display gardens of the Yellow Rose Nursery.

Reservations will be accepted in the order of return receipt. All seating will be assigned so please let us know with whom you wish to be seated.

Friendship tables for 8 are $1,200, Couples for $200.00 and Individual seats are $100.00, Visa, Mastercard and American Express accepted.

Online ticket reservation coming soon. Reserve tickets by calling our message line at (509) 786-8499.

Show your support for our local communities by donating a Live or Silent Auction item.

Marble: End of US Empire and Building Community

JJS over at Radio Free Redoubt shares Rep. Matt Shea’s speech at the Marble God & Country Celebration.  Mr. Shea discusses the end of the US empire, building community and Christian leadership. Matt Shea’s speech begins at the 17:50 mark. Click the play arrow below to begin playback.

 

Related:

US Military Establishment Study: The American Empire Is ‘Collapsing’

Fate of Empires by Sir John Glubb (pdf)

Excerpt from John Mosby’s “Forging the Hero”

John Mosby’s Call to Action

In a new article, “The Only Call to Action For Me,” John Mosby of the Mountain Guerrilla blog, discusses again the importance of community and strengthening the bonds between your community members.

The archaeological, anthropological, and historiographic record of the collective human experience pretty clearly indicates that, in order for any human cultural activity to succeed, some form of community must be engaged in the collective effort towards the achievement of the goal. In order for that to take place, the members of the community must be willing to sacrifice self to some degree, and act in a spirit of service to the community. The idealist naivete of “reason always prevails,” or that mental cleverness alone can resolve the world’s problems, without physical effort or community participation, falls flat, as soon as a foe is met who is willing to stop talking, and start chopping the heads off the intellectuals.

As usual for Mosby, language warning.

Excerpt from John Mosby’s “Forging the Hero”

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We’ve blogged in the past an interview with John Mosby. He has shared on his site a lengthy excerpt from his book Forging the Hero.  The excerpt deals with the fall of empires and the current fall of the American empire.  Here is just one paragraph to entice you to read the rest.

Therein lies the answer to “so, what?” The masses of the Plebeian class may sit idly by, comfortable in their decadence, blindly hoping for a postponement of the inevitable, satisfied—even as the world burns around them—the the reassurance of their Patrician leaders that “Progress will never cease!” and/or “We’re protected by the blessing of Almighty God!” As people awaken to the visceral reality of the crumbling infrastructure of empire however, more and more people are beginning to feel obligated to act towards the preservation of their traditional customs and values. Any person who values their family, and is unwilling to see their family destroyed on the altar of the invasion of alien, foreign cultural values overtaking our way of life, bears the burden of releasing themselves from the comfortable fantasy that ignorance equals avoidance. They must take up the yoke of the hero. We cannot place the fate of our futures, or the futures of our children and grandchildren, or the legacies of their pasts, in the hands of some ephemeral, fantastic “hope.” We must grab the opportunity presented by the decline of decadent imperial culture and the degeneration of the individual, and “emigrate’ outside the decadence of the collapsing culture, to either rebuild the culture, or—more valuable—to build a new culture that enshrines the best of the old, while being more resilient. The barriers that present themselves are fear and ignorance, but those are walls that are easily scaled and breached.

 

A book review of Forging the Hero can be found on survivalistboards.com. The book can be purchased through his Mountain Guerilla web site.

Update: Pastor Joe Fox of Viking Preparedness has a short Youtube review of Forging the Hero as well.