Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Reality Check


       I have never understood why some people consider preppers or survivalists to be a threat to the status quo.  Do they worry that we won't spend our disposable income in their businesses ?   Most preppers are simply being self sufficient to the degree that during an expected emergency, such as an earthquake, a hurricane or an ice storm, they won't need local or federal government help within just a few days !    Being reasonably prepared and reasonably self sufficient means that your family won't be a draw to local systems, thus diverting help from the people who might really need help when its stretched to its thinnest point.

                When I encourage all of you to be more self sufficient, I am doing so to encourage that direction.  I don't expect you to do your own brain surgery, raise sheep and salvage their thyroid glands to make your own dessicated thyroid, or take a chemistry class with the intention of trying to develop recombinant DNA origin insulin in the frij, right next to the jello.   Although we discuss things like emergency childbirth, respiratory infections, urinary tract infections, none of us are an island.  It is not realistic to do everything for yourself in the long term.

                  It is appropriate to gather an Emergency Medical Kit for your home.  It is intelligent to gather an Family Evacuation Medical Kit. I would actually prefer one you gather yourself as it's less expensive and if you have amassed the supplies yourself you are more likely to remember what you have in it.  Emergency food that is palatable and long lasting is necessary for your home, and for family evacuation.  A specialized bag locked in a safe or locking cabinet with family documents, or spare original documents is also a good idea.  Having a plan for the evacuation of your family and for your animals is simply common sense.  In a wildfire, how quickly could you, your family, your pets and the items mentioned above evacuate your home ?
Most families can do these things quite effectively and fairly inexpensively.

                I do not expect you to gather all the clothing, food, toys, and Christmas presents you will need for the rest of your lives. I don't think you need to outfit a dental chair and hire a private dentist, (or worse, stock a dental chair with a copy of the book, Where there is no Dentist)   Unless you have some unusual special needs with regard to tornadoes and you are basementless, then I don't know that you should invest in a bunker, small or otherwise, because it might divert limited needed assets from things you need more.

              I do think that we should be preparing our children for real life and for employment.  I think that instruction for them in preparedness is a part of a good education, and that good parents educate their children, not simply abrogating the responsibility to a public educational system that does everything else but educate.    I think that you should learn whatever you can about your vehicles, and that you should have some capability with regard to repairs which comprise normal maintenance.  I think that within the confines of your present life, you should grow whatever food you can, even if all it is, are sprouts on the kitchen window, or tomatoes in a pot on an apartment terrace.  I think a nice professional haircut is a wonderful thing, but I also think that if you can trim your kids hair following the lines set by a professional hairdresser, and save half the money you would have spent on haircuts each year, then you and your family will be able to eat better than you would have otherwise.

           I believe that every adult should know how a handgun and a rifle works.  This way, you will be the first to know when someone is handling one improperly, and if need be, you can expel the magazine, check the chamber, and render the weapon ammoless.  Whether you choose to own one or not, is your business, but healthy adults without mental health issues should know how they work.

           If you live in a rural area, then unless you are being treated for cancer this year, or you are elderly, then you need to have a plan whereby you and yours can evacuate from where you live. The same is true for your animals, if in fact you have a hobby farm or livestock.  (See farm evacuation .)   See also farm disaster planning.


Gorges Smythe said...

I wish more folks would think about these things; it's just common sense. Unfortunately, as you know, there isn't a lot of that commodity around anymore.

JaneofVirginia said...

My hope is that we might wake a few people up, just a little, simply by posting in our blogs. Thanks for posting, Gorges.

Lady Locust said...

Growing up on a ranch, I always considered the above to be normal. When we went to town, (1.5 hour trip each way to & from the grocery store) we usually ended up with at least 2 carts of groceries. That wasn't counting the feed store, tire shop, etc. It wasn't really prepping for an emergency. It was to get us through until our next trip to town. Even after I left the ranch, the training was still there & that's how I tend to function. I've never considered it a bad thing:)
Great post.

Linda said...

I live in a small town, but I have a car or a little red wagon. My two hens would love to go for a ride. But, we won't be leaving. I have a little stuff, but not much. However, it is just me here to worry about.

Anonymous said...

MissJane, do to the prevailing mistrust a lot of preppers have with our government, do you think that the government showing up with supplies and water and medical resources and troops to police potential looters would be looked upon as a hostile action. I realize that the government is not very efficient in these situations and often cause more problems than they solve but I believe that their motives are good. Your thoughts on this.Unfortunately lawlessness is always a very real threat in these scenerios.

Anonymous said...

by the way, are you familiar with the book that outlines veterinary medicines suitable for human use. that is something I am interested in.

Sandy said...


It's a shame many people don't think about being prepared. They live their lives day to day, and when something happens they feel it's okay to depend on others.

JaneofVirginia said...

Yes, I had similar early training. We only shopped once a month or sometimes every two weeks. We liked to make sure that we didn't have to make a special trip. My parents were not only busy, but extra trips were expensive. Thanks for posting.

JaneofVirginia said...

For most emergencies most people can shelter in place. It's good to have a plan. Thanks for your post.

JaneofVirginia said...

I don't know that most preppers would see government offerings of help as hostile action. I am aware though that FEMA left Louisa County, VA full months earlier than it had planned, in part because Louisans wouldn't take their help. They took help from the Allan Jackson Benefit Concert but not from FEMA. There certainly is abundant government mistrust.
Lawlessness is indeed a big threat in a disaster of any type. Thanks for your posts.

JaneofVirginia said...

I have a number of medical books which discuss emergency care and protocols in disasters. I like Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy's most recent book. We have to be careful using veterinary medicines. The injectables are buffered with less expensive substances which may cause allergic reactions in human beings. I am not familiar with a specific book which recommends this. Have a great day.

JaneofVirginia said...

I understand that an emergency (such as the landslide in the Pacific NW) can occur leaving us at the absolute mercy of the kindness of others and of government. However, I would like to avoid needing help if I can. Being okay in an emergency is also good because it frees you up to help neighbors if such help is needed. Thanks for your post, Sandy.

lotta joy said...


When we first landed here, I had ALL pertinent papers in my EVAC bag, and now they're in the bank's lockbox. I must have started feeling momentarily confident at the time, because a lot of things can happen to shut the doors to a bank.

MAKE COPIES of everything before putting them into a bank lockbox.

Regarding weapons: A visitor, (with a "look at me!" personality), wanted to "see" my pistol. With a catastrophe on the horizon, I removed the clip and emptied the chamber. The first thing she did was grab the grip, place her finger on the trigger, and TURN AROUND so everyone could see her.

Yes. Always be on guard. Half of all people are idiots who think holding a gun is "cute".

JaneofVirginia said...

Thanks LJ,
Making copies of everything is always a good idea. I have all our documents in a safe and then we have actual certified other originals that we got originally for our adoption. It was easy to get actual authentic duplicate originals of everything, except of course, a passport.
People change sometimes when they hold a weapon. I am afraid I am not nice enough to let anyone else hold mine, except perhaps my gunsmith. LOL Thanks for posting.