Archive for MyBlog

Can North Korea Win a War with the USA?

Can North Korea Win a War with the United States?

From a survival/disaster point of view it is only important that North Korea thinks they can win a nuclear exchange.  If the think they can win they are much more likely to initiate action.  North Korea recently postulated that they would win because (1) their population is tougher and more unified and (2) they have many more deep underground shelters.  America has not experienced the true destruction and deprivations of war on our homeland in over one-hundred and fifty years. We have grown accustom to a level of comfort and security that breeds apathy and an inability to endure hardship.  The ongoing decline of participation in survival camps, Boy Scout camps and other survival oriented programs certainly indicates a softening of our society.  Most great civilizations grow weak and soft over time and are eventually overrun by some form of barbarians.  America is not immune to this historic pattern. America’s massive disunity promoted by the media and the internet would certainly lead a closed and paranoid society like North Korea to convince themselves that we would dissolve in the face of even a limited nuclear exchange.

We can lose and have lost a war against a much weaker opponent. We lost the war in Vietnam because of our division and weakness of political will in spite of the fact that or military had effectively crushed the Vietcong and North Vietnamese Army.  We are having difficulty winning wars against primitive, cave dwelling forces in the Middle East.  North Korea is encouraged by these examples.    A few historic examples that apply to the current crisis are:

  • The Japanese initiated World War Two in spite of being statically overmatched by more than ten-to-one in every category of military and industrial capability. They were convinced that American’s were weak-willed and would not sustain a long struggle across the pacific islands.  Their sneak attack enraged and unified the American public and resulted in a disaster for Japan and the loss of millions of American lives as well.
  • After World War One several prominent British organizations pledged that Britain would never again go to war on the European content. This lead Hitler to be more aggressive and miscalculate.  The result was a disaster for Germany and for Britain.
  • During the Cold War it was reported that the American public’s interest in survival (e.g. survivalists) and preparedness worried the KGB. In spite of the inadequate US government programs the fact that some of the American public were willing to face an Armageddon caused the Soviets to resist the temptation to threaten and intimidate.  This perception may have actually prevented World War Three.

To start a war it is only important that the initiating side believes they can win

While we can and would military obliterate North Korea they could probably still overrun South Korea and heavily damage Japan. Even a few hits on American cities would result in economic collapse and political chaos.  Russia and China would be free to expand and assert themselves as the major world powers.  While Korea might lose, America could lose a lot.  From a purely survival standpoint, any kind of nuclear detonation in even ono or two American cities would result in radioactive fallout, economic chaos, civil disorder, food shortages, and probably epidemics. North Korea has also threatened to detonate an electromagnetic pulse device that could do more long-term damage than actual bombs.

If North Korea (or any other nation) initiates a nuclear or conventional war in the next few years it will be facilitated by our apparent disunity and the public’s inability to face even minimal hardships and discomfort.  A more unified and robust preparedness and survival movement as we had during the Cold War years would go a long-way to discourage would be aggressors.   Weakness invites aggression.

 

Nov./Dec Issue of American Survivor Just Posted

We just posted the PDF file for the November/December issue of American Survivor to the Members Only / American Survivor page.  This issue has a great article on surviving a nuclear event along with a lot of other great information.  Members can download over 50 back issues with articles on all aspects of survival and preparedness.   American Survivor is the oldest survival and preparedness publication in the USA and often has more actual information than expensive magazines that are full of advertisements and oversize illustrations.  Our dues are still only $20.00 per year or $50.00 for three years. That has not changed since the 80s!

Surprise Disasters and the Death Spiral

More Surprises and the Spiral.

The Subject of our July/August issue was “Surprise Disaster”. Does four major hurricanes and two major earthquakes in the same region in the same month qualify? Other recent American Survivor headline topics included “Severe Weather”, and “Descent into Chios”. We seem to be right on target with our materials. I was looking at a 1970s copy of our newsletter and the headline was “The Coming Age of Terrorism”. Prophetic. Too bad that so few people read our publications.
The recent multiple disasters verifies our predictions about a disaster to catastrophe spiral. There is no such thing as recovery once the magnitude and quantity of disaster outpaces the resources and economies of the civilization. The emergency management agencies were exhausted. The Red Cross was forced to recruit literately off the street to get help. The public’s ability to provide contributions dwindled as each new demand occurred. State and national governments were forced further into debt. Housing prices are predicted to rise as material and labor goes towards replacing home instead of building new ones. Puerto Rico’s utility companies had already field for bankruptcy before the hurricanes struck. All of the funds from “recovery” and response must come from infrastructure improvements, security and safety agencies and from maintenance of the very systems that protect us from the next disaster. This spiral of more disasters, less capability and a weakening economy is unlikely to take us to a safe and prosperous future.

The Dying Voices of Survival & Preparedness

The Dying Voices of Preparedness

Will American Survivor be the last preparedness

and survival publication in print?

I was just informed that Backwoods Home magazine will cease publication. This is yet another casualty of blogs, U-tube and free internet content. Backwoods Home was a philosophically a survival magazine, but had a severely limited range. Being published in the Oregon back-country, there was a lot about cabin building, goat raising and jam making and not much about urban and suburban survival concerns. That limited its appeal to less than 10-percent of the population. The cost of paper publication printing and mailing against electronic publication is rapidly reducing the number and size of existing survival and preparedness publications. Even the NRA’s National Rifleman and National Geographic’s magazines are down to less than half of their previous number of pages. Recently Harris Publications ceased publishing Survivors Edge (Harris went entirely out of business), Survivalist magazine and Prepper and Shooter magazines’ have also stopped publication. There are still a number of survival/preparedness magazines published occasionally under various titles found on newsstand shelves. Bugout magazine is still in print as a subscription magazine as is Self-Reliance and Mother Earth News. More alarming is the declining number of good survival and preparedness books being printed. Live Free USA buys survival related books from out-off-print book dealers to sell at expositions, meetings and gun shows. Many of these books are not being reprinted again and are now permanently out-of-print,.
It is unfortunate to see this casualty-rate among printed publications. In my opinion, blogs, posts, email letters and websites lack the quality, depth and sustainability of magazines, newsletters and books.
American Survivor was originally published as “Directions” and then “New Directions” by Live Free starting in the early 1970’s The first issues were actually mimeographed. We are the oldest established and surviving survival/preparedness publication in America. We have survived because (1) we are not trying to make a profit and do not need to make a living at it and (2) we have been dedicated to the cause through its ups-and-downs for decades. At one point in the 1990’s we were down to about 55-issues. Back in the 1980’s we put out a 16-page issue every month. Today we distribute about 500 printed copies ever-other month, but many more are downloaded off the website. I have also found that people have kept back issues from our earliest times in binders. I am reluctant to go to an email only distribution of American Survivor for several reasons.
• About 30% of our members never provide an email address and would probably not renew at all.
• Email publications dump into an ocean of on-line publications, most of-which few have time to find, download and print or read. Personally, I have no time to read 90% of my incoming email and I never download any forwarded stuff.
• Existing email survival magazines seem to be focused on profit and selling stuff to readers, rather than in-depth material.
• Postage and printing are still affordable enough to mail these issues as long as we have help with assembly and stamping.
The real issue is continuity. Most of our writers are well past 60 and volunteers for editing, assembling and managing are harder and harder to find. In the past we have had a number of other editor’s take over, but quit after a year or two after changing the format or running consistently late issues. Recovery and rebuilding then made more work for me. This is why I hang on to this simple format and basic content. We have hundreds of articles in stock and we could even expand the size and circulation if we had others to handle editing, production and mailing. Meanwhile, I will hang on for a few more years if necessary.
Other survival and preparedness publications in my archives are;
• Preparedness Journal: this was a low-budget magazine that was published for a few years late 1990’s focused on the Y2K issue.
• Practical Survival: Published in the late 1980’s through the mid 1990’s
• Survive: a slick, well-illustrated magazine published by the same folks that publish Soldier of Fortune magazine. Published from the early 1980’s to the mid 1990’s
• Survive Tomorrow: A multi-page newsletter that was numbered to be placed in a binder. This was published through the 1980,s
• Survival News: A basic newsletter published out of Riverside IL in the 1980s
• Australasian Survivor: Published by the Aussies in the mid 1980’s
• American Survival Guide: Published From the early 1980’s through the early 1990’s. This was by-far the widest-read and longest-running survival preparedness publication in America. They featured several articles about Live Free USA including our 25th anniversary recognition with yours-truly on the cover, repelling down a cliff.
The above publications ceased distribution because there was a significant decline in interest and support for survival and preparedness immediately after the end of the Cold War. Most survival organizations dissolved and Live Free USA had to drastically reduce publications and activities to survive through this period. Only our loyal, hard-core members and mission dedication kept us going.

New Recommended Survival Book List

It has been a few years since we updated our book list.  This is simply because we have too many projects going on simultaneously, but we will try to update it more often.  We invite our readers to send in their recommendations in short form for the list or in longer form for publication as book reviews in our American Survivor newsletter.  Send these to me at survivorjj@aol.com

RecommendedBookList,7-16

Surviving An Active Shooter Event

Resent events have made surviving an "active shooter" situation a real possibility.  While writing my next book I am including it in the Ten Street Survival Techniques section.  This is a combination of several official recommendations with my own survivalist additions.

Active shooter situations are becoming more frequent. An active shooter is one that not only initiates a shooting, but continues to remain at the scene or in motion shooting multiple rounds at multiple victims.  Active shooters target crowded locations such as stores, theaters, and public building where every round fired may hit one or more victims.  If caught in this situation you can be sure that the killing will continue until the police engage the shooter or he/she/they have killed everyone in sight.  Even the police have now admitted that civilians caught in such situations should take certain actions rather than “stay calm” or try to reason with the terrorists.  Unfortunately, the days when you could relax and enjoy public places and public venues are gone. Violent crime, gang shootings, drive-by shootings and terrorist guns and bombs have converted our communities into potential war zones. Below are steps and actions that you can take to survive such an event.

Being Prepared for an Active Shooter

Be observant and alert!  In any crowed you must observe for suspicious behavior. Are people wearing unnecessarily baggy or long clothing?  Do some people have suspicious bulges in their clothing or are they carrying odd long packages. Are some people wearing backpacks or leaving backpacks behind?  Are some people moving around suspiciously and looking about as if ready to take some action?   If your “sixth sense” is telling you to get out or get down do it!

Make an escape plan.  In a restaurant, mall, theater or other potential terrorist target make sure to constantly be aware of the exits. Exits can be fire doors, windows, over railings, anything that works. Consider routs to exits that offer the most bulletproof cover. If true escape is not safe then seek any room with a solid door that can be locked and barricaded with heavy furniture.

Identify potential bullet proof cover. While you may hide behind furniture, car bodies, and plaster or wood walls it will generally not stop bullets. They provide only concealment. Cover is offered by brick walls, cement walls, heavy appliances, engine blocks and other very solid objects. Constantly identify these as places to go if escape is not immediately available.

What to Do When the First Shots are Fired

Act Immediately!  If you have accepted the possibility of an active shooter situation and taken the steps above you can skip from denial to action while other freeze and get shot.

Take Cover. If you are already in the shooters vision or there is no covered escape route that will not expose you to the shooter, this may be your only option. Get behind the strongest, thickest object possible immediately. Stay low or lie flat.  If wounded or among wounded lie down and play dead. Shooters will instinctively shoot anything that they see that moves.

Escape: If the shooter(s) has his back to you, you have a chance to escape or at least reach good cover before they turn around. Remember that there may be more than one shooter. If you go through a door get to the right or left of the door and keep moving towards cover since the shooter may shoot through it or follow you out.

Engage:  The Washington D.C. chief of police and many others have now recognized that civilians may need to take action on their own before law enforcement arrives to save themselves and others. If you cannot escape or find cover and the shooter continues to shoot your best chance is to distract, delay or disable the shooter. Discharging a fire extinguisher, throwing a heavy object; tackling, clubbing, or stabbing are all justified in this situation.  If you have a firearm use it!  Yes, shoot them in the back if you can. Shoot for the head as they often have bullet-proof vests. If possible shoot from a low position so your bullets go upward and avoid hitting bystanders. Don’t hesitate and don’t try to get them to surrender.  They will just shoot you.  CAUTION: remember, the police will consider anyone they find holding a gun as the enemy!  Once the shooter(s) are down (1) do not pick up their weapons and (2) put your weapon down and your hands up and wait for the police.

Communicate: If not in immediate danger use your cell phone to call for help. Provide the police with any information that you can, such as the description number of shooters, location of shooters, type of weapons used, direction shooters are or did move.  If you are barricaded or behind cover provide your location and your own description.  If nothing else, pull the fire alarm to warn others and distract the shooter. .

Recovery:  If you are lucky enough to have survived such as violent event you are not safe yet. The police are going to be very jumpy on entry!  Stay down and keep your hands up. Follow police instructions carefully. They will consider everyone there as a threat until searched, interviewed and cleared.  There may still be other active shooters at large or there may be bombs or booby traps left behind.  If you are carrying a firearm (open or concealed) be sure to immediately tell the police while keeping your hands up. If you have any medical training try to help the wounded until the medics arrive. Stopping severe bleeding and treating for shock may be an important lifesaving action.

 

Eight New Articles On Survival

I just added a bunch of new articles to the "Articles" section of this site.  Live Free USA has hundreds of articles and publications that we are updating and getting ready to add to the site and/or our newsletters. We also continue to create new up to date material for publication and training.  The new articles are:

Urban Street Survival

Surviving the First 72-Hours*

Cold and Hungry

Eight Critical Medical Skills*

Home Safety and a Homes Safety Checklist*

Ten Principles of Self-Reliance*

How to Stop Sever Bleeding*

  • Also used as training presentations

The article below is more topical than how-to so I have added it to the general blog.  It examines the importance of food and the crisis in food supplies that is inevitable in the next few decades.

FAMIN&FOOD,3-12

 

 

10 Weeds that Heal

I discovered a great article on healing "weeds" right in our own backyard. Thanks to Patsy Clark I have been motivated to learn more about what we can use, other than "traditional medicines". I hope you are able to learn something new from this article!

http://americanpreppersnetwork.com/2015/04/10-weeds-heal-theyre-right-backyard.html

 

This might come as a surprise, but many of you just might have a medicine cabinet right in your own backyard and you aren’t even aware of it. Yes, that is correct. As a Certified Master Herbalist I wanted to share with you some basic “weeds” that are known to have a profound impact on you or someone that you love health. Okay here we go!

 

Purslane

Purslane– Is rich in heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Purslane is one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids for vegans, vegetarians, and other people who do not or cannot eat fish. In fact, purslane is said to be the richest source of omega-3 fatty acids among cultivated green leafy vegetables. However, some wild-growing greens, such as molokhia and stamnagathi, have been reported to contain omega-3 fatty acids in amounts comparable to those found in purslane.

 

How to reap the health benefits of summer purslane

Purslane starts to lose its nutritional qualities immediately after harvest. Therefore, the best way to maximize the health benefits of purslane is to grow your purslane and harvest it as needed. If you don’t have a big garden or if you fear that planting purslane will take over your entire vegetable garden (after all, purslane is a weed), consider growing purslane indoors as a microgreen. All you need is an empty container, some potting soil, organic purslane seed, and a sunny window sill. Simply sow the seeds, keep the soil moist (but avoid over-watering), and watch your micro-purslane grow!

Dandelions
Dandelions– Are rich in potassium which is often lost through excess urination. Dandelions are exceptionally high in vitamin A, vitamin, C and iron with more iron and calcium than spinach.

Almost all the parts of dandelion herb are  in various traditional as well in modern medicine. The principle compounds in the herb have laxative and diuretic functions. The plant parts have been used as herbal remedy for liver and gall bladder complaints. The herb is also a good tonic, appetite stimulant and is a good remedy for dyspeptic complaints. The inside surface of the flower stems used as a smoothing agent for burns and stings (for example in stinging nettle allergy).

Here are some serving tips:

* Young tender shoots, raw or blanched, used in salads and sandwiches either alone or in combination with other greens like lettuce, kale, cabbage, chives, etc.
* Fresh greens may also used in soups, stews, juices, and as cooked vegetable.
* Dried leaves as well as flower parts used to make tonic drinks and herbal dandelion teas.
* Dandelion flowers used in the preparation of wines, schnapps, pancakes; and are favored in Arab baking.
* Lightly roasted and grounded roots used to make wonderfully flavorful dandelion coffee.

Chickweed
Chickweed-Is rich in nutrients that nourish the lymph and glandular systems. Chickweed is best known for it’s ability to cool inflammation and speed healing for internal or external flare-ups. Chickweed tea is an old remedy for obesity. Herbalists like myself drink teas of fresh chickweed as one of the classic spring tonics to cleanse the blood. Chickweed poultices are useful for cooling and soothing minor burns, skin irritations, and rashes particularly when associated with dryness and itching. Chickweed is taken by mouth to treat stomach problems, intestinal complaints such as constipation, disorders of the blood, arthritis, lung diseases including asthma, kidney disorders, inflammatory conditions of the urinary tract, rabies, and scurvy or vitamin C deficiency. It is also used to relieve extreme exhaustion. Chickweed is applied on the skin relieve various skin conditions such as skin wounds, ulcers, burns, arthritis pain and symptoms of eczema.

How to Enjoy Chickweed

Chickweed leaves can be steamed or added raw to salads. You can also make a tea from the leaves by steeping them in a cup of boiling water for ten minutes.

Rosemary
Rosemary-Reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease due to it carnosic acid.

Health Benefits of Rosemary:

The wonderful smell of rosemary is often associated with good food and great times, but it could just as easily be associated with good health. Rosemary contains substances that are useful for stimulating the immune system, increasing circulation, and improving digestion. Rosemary also contains anti-inflammatory compounds that may make it useful for reducing the severity of asthma attacks.

Rosemary is used for digestion problems, including heartburn, intestinal gas (flatulence), liver and gallbladder complaints, and loss of appetite. It is also used for gout, cough, headache, high blood pressure, and reducing age-related memory loss. In addition, rosemary has been shown to increase the blood flow to the head and brain, improving concentration. So, the next time you enhance the flavor of some special dish with rosemary, congratulate yourself for a wise as well as delicious choice. Some women use rosemary for increasing menstrual flow. If you’re pregnant please take care with consuming or eating Rosemary because it is also know to cause miscarriages.

Rosemary is used topically (applied to the skin) for preventing and treating baldness; and treating circulation problems, toothache, a skin condition called eczema, and joint or muscle pain such as myalgia, sciatica, and intercostal neuralgia. It is also used for wound healing, in bath therapy (balneotherapy), and as an insect repellent.

 

Milkweed
Milk Weed-Milkweed is useful for kidney problems, dropsy, scrofula, conditions of the bladder, water retention, asthma, stomach ailments, and gallstones, female disorders, arthritis, and bronchitis. It causes increase in perspiration, thus reducing fever. Some Native Americans rubbed the (latex) juice on warts, moles, ringworms; others drank an infusion of the rootstock to produce temporary sterility or as a laxative. A folk cancer remedy. Some milkweed species are highly poisonous.

White Clover
White Clover– has useful compounds to treat bronchitis & respiratory disorders. Herbalists revere red clover for several purported health benefits, including detoxification, decongestion and reducing inflammation. Red clover is also considered a rich source of isoflavones, an antioxidant associated in some studies with combating certain types of cancer, including breast cancer and prostate cancer. The isoflavones in red clover have also been found beneficial in reducing bone loss and menopausal symptoms in healthy women. White clover has not been found to possess the same constituents or health benefits. Remember that no herbs have been FDA-approved for medical use and you should always consult with your doctor before taking red clover tea for any health-related purpose. All clovers, including white, possess some amount of vitamins A, E, C, B-2, and B-3, calcium, chromium, lecithin, magnesium, potassium and silicium. Among other things, clover is a blood purifier, is antispasmodic, and an expectorant. The tea is good for asthma and bronchitis.

For medicinal wash or internal use of Clover:

Steep tea (This can be any part of the clover plant.) in water for 30 minutes, then take 1-2 oz. frequently or 4-6 cups daily.

Nettles– Are useful in arthritis, gout, asthma, hay fever, and Alzheimer’s disease and soft tissue conditions such as fibromyalgia and tendonitis. Patients with Lupus and other auto-immune disorders suffering from joint pain experience relief from drinking a cup of nettle tea or eating stewed nettle leaves daily. Nettle is high in iron making it excellent for combating anemia and fatigue. It supports the liver. Urinary tract support. A great herb for treating bladder and urinary tract function. Nettle aids in digestive issues as well. Nettle leaf is effective at reducing symptoms of the digestive tract ranging from acid reflux, excess gas, nausea, colitis and Celiac disease.

Lavender
Lavender-Has anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties. Both the flowers and the leaves of the lavender plant are used in herbal medicine, usually in the form of an oil or as a tea. The compound linalool, found in lavender oil, is known to have an anti-anxiety, calming effect. Lavender oil is often used as a relaxant during massages, added to lotions for babies, children and adults, and used in soap. Lavender has also been shown to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic (pain killing) attributes.

 

Lavender health benefits are many: Lavender Reduces anxiety and emotional stress, heals burns and wounds, improves sleep, restores skin complexion and reduces acne, slows aging with powerful antioxidants, improves eczema and psoriasis, and alleviates headaches.

Preparation Methods & Dosage: Lavender tea can be made from the fresh or dried flowers. Lavender essential oil should only be used externally, and can be used in massage oils, baths and aroma lamps.

Lavender Side Effects: The volatile oils in lavender can be very hard on the liver and kidneys of cats and dogs so no internal use of the herb is suggested for our animal friends.

Burdock
Burdock-May reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack. Besides its culinary uses, burdock root has long been praised for its healing properties. The rest of this article is dedicated to shedding light on the numerous nutritional and health benefits of burdock root (or gobo, as the Japanese call it). Burdock root contains insulin, a type of beneficial fiber with numerous positive health effects. Most of these health benefits are linked to the ability of insulin fiber to promote the growth of bifidobacteria in the large intestine. Bifidobacteria are health promoting microbes that are naturally present in the gut. These bacteria have been found to destroy harmful bacteria in the intestines, promote easy bowel movement, and improve the immune system. Some studies also suggest that bifidobacteria may be able to reduce the levels of certain colonic enzymes that convert pro-carcinogenic molecules into carcinogens (cancer-causing molecules).

Preparation Methods:

You can add it to soups and saute it in a stir fry with carrots and sesame seeds, yum! You can also throw it in some coleslaw, or even just add it to your normal everyday salads. Burdock can also be juiced for a delicious and refreshing healing beverage. I have also discovered that traditional Chinese medicine also has used burdock synergistic-ally with other herbs to treat cold symptoms and sore throats.


Sow Thistle-is useful for treating inflammation and digestive upsets. Nutritional info about sow thistles. Sow thistle leaves are said to be a good source of vitamins A and C, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, calcium, phosphorus, and iron. Young sow thistle leaves are wonderful in salad, adding substance and depth to the flavor of other greens. They have a slight bitter edge (just like some lettuces do), but they’re less bitter than dandelion leaves. The flowers are also delicious in salads.

I hope you really enjoyed reading up “backyard weeds” and their health potentials.

Disclaimer: Information contained on this website is for general information purposes only and must not be used to treat or diagnose dental/medical conditions. The products and statements on this website have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended as dental advice. Should you have any health concerns please check with your medical doctor before self-administering any natural remedy.

Can We Prove Steven Hawking Wrong?

Can We Prove Steven Hawking Wrong?

Extinction is the rule.  Survival is the exception.

Carl Sagen 2007

      Steven Hawking is arguably the smartest man in the world.  The British theoretical physicist is noted for his work in gravitational singularities, relativity and quantum mechanics.   Now when a guy like that expresses serious doubts that humanity can survive another 100-years we should all be very concerned.  Not that long ago, preparedness advocates and survivalists were considered paranoid extremists, but today some of the most intelligent people on earth are saying what we have been saying for decades.  Hawking is not a politician trying to gain power or a survival goods salesman.  He is a scientist and a mathematician who has done the math.  Our extinction or at least the dramatic decline in civilization is a mathematical certainty.       Political leaders are franticly trying to postpone economic, social and environmental collapse while covering up the truth.  The “normalcy bias” is a strong psychological affect that supports denial of danger and bad news in spite of obvious trends and events.  Most people believe any good news about “recovery”, unlimited fuel supplies, peace, etc. and try to ignore dangers and threats until it’s too late.  However the constant barrage of disasters, economic problems, war and chaos are forcing more and more thoughtful and responsible citizens into preparedness, survival education and sustainable living programs.

One of the dangers that Steven Hawking is primarily concerned about is the population explosion that will inevitably use up all of the natural resources resulting in wars, famine and massive depopulation.  He and other noted scientists have predicted that the population at the end of this century will be reduced to what it was at the end of the 19th century.  The destruction, misery and death involved in that transition is horrible to contemplate. That’s not a fear mongering emotional prediction.  It is a mathematical calculated result.

Another one of his concerns is the rise Artificial Intelligence simply dehumanizing and replacing civilization as we know it.  Again, this is pretty smart guy not a conspiracy nut!   Let’s face it, we are already fighting a losing battle to control the internet and the digitalization of everything we do.   This pervasive dependency (read helplessness) has weakened newer generations and shifted power and wealth upwards.   Our privacy and therefore our freedom is virtually non-existent.  Constant networking and reaction to incoming messages (often computer generated) eliminates in-depth thinking and creativity.  A recent study concluded that, thanks to smart phones, the human attention span is down to seven seconds.  That’s one second less than a goldfish!    Computer power and intrusion grows exponentially while human intelligence has been shown to be declining for decades*   Do the math.

Recently Bill Gates joined Hawkins in predicting that a serious epidemic would ravage humanity in the not-to-distant future.  Gates rates the chances of a widespread epidemic in his lifetime as 50-percent and estimated the death toll as high as 33-million.  The political and economic impact would be staggering. We have had plenty of near-miss epidemics in the past few years.  Our luck is bound to run out.

As I write this, California is in the grips of the longest drought in history, while Texas recovesr from a drought with enough rain in one week to cover the entire state to a depth of eight inches.  Thousands are dying in India from record high temperatures and it’s only May.  In Alaska it’s in the 80’s and 90’s in May. Yes I said Alaska.  More frequent and severe tornado groups hit every year. Boston is recovering from almost 90 inches of snow in one month.   Various diseases, floods and droughts are ravaging food supplies, animals and crops throughout the world driving prices upward. California and India have nearly exhausted the water in their underground aquafers.   Fuel prices have come down due to increased pumping and last ditch (high cost) drilling.  This is like spending your last savings.  It feels good, but only hastens resource bankruptcy.  States and nations are going bankrupt almost weekly with riots and demonstrations that achieve nothing.  Let’s not even start on the Middle East.

Unfortunately there is not much chance of averting some combination of runaway technology, overpopulation, environmental extremes, economic deterioration and world epidemics taking a huge toll on human life and civilization as we know it.  These are not things that could happen or might happen.  They are things that are happening already.

Hawking’s concern is about the survival of “humanity” not “humans”.   It’s hard to conceive a disaster or sequence of disasters that would totally wipe out every last human being on earth, but we can easily see how the above circumstances could reduce “humanity” to something less than human.  Artificial intelligence is a clear and present danger to our independent thinking and our ability to act as free human beings.  The fear and desperation brought on by disasters and disintegrating social structures often results in the rise of the worst human traits.  Predators, dictators and demagogues thrive on such conditions.  In the past humanity has been able to flee form oppression, disease, famine and disaster, but there is nowhere left on earth to run.

If “humanity” is to survive all that lies ahead, it is up to us.   The growing preparedness, survivalist, self-reliance, sustainable living movement must grow faster and be stronger than the already growing trends towards submissiveness, despair, chaos and confusion.  It must be our mission to preserve and strengthen individual and family self-reliance and guide good people through the challenges to their physical and moral survival.

Sometime in the twenty-second Century your surviving children and grandchildren will live in a world that your efforts and values created.  They may survive as desperate, violent, and wretched people living off of the remnants of a past civilization or they may be free, happy and productive citizens still masters of an improved and recovered society.  Live Free USA has always maintained that there is much more to survival than just staying alive.  Let’s hope we are smart enough to prove Steven Hawkins wrong.

* Scientists postulate that with the comforts and security of the 20th Century the survival struggles that required higher intelligence no longer existed and so we started to get dumber.   Now computers do the thinking.  Guess where that leads.

* Hawking has argued that computer viruses should be considered a new form of life, and has stated that "maybe it says something about human nature, that the only form of life we have created so far is purely destructive.

**American Survivor Blog**

Welcome to our NEW Community Blog!

Let's make this a "Living" page and exchange our thoughts and knowledge freely!

Everyone has their specific skill set, therefore, we all have the ability to teach or learn something new. It is always a good idea to expand our abilities to enable ourselves to "live outside the norm". That is what emergency preparedness is all about!

What have you been up to this week??