Monthly Archives: August 2013

Tactical Pens

On the topic of tactical or \self-defense\ pens.
I have carried several over the years. First some of my background and experience, I have worked in the medical field for 2 score years. Areas that are pertinent to this discussion military, EMS, surgery, psych and in the criminal justice system. I have treated many people with wounds -some fatal- caused by the tactical pens that I am going to discuss. I have carried them into high security areas which include recently airplanes. I have NEVER been challenged by security about my tactical pens.

I carry several on me when I go out in public and sometimes even when I am at home. The ones that I like are economical enough to be considered disposable. ;]

The brand that I like best is Bic…. The hard plastic ones with removable caps.
Back in the 70s Bic used to have an ad on TV where they would shoot a pen out of a 30-06 into a pine board. The pen penetrated a 1 inch thick pine board with enough of the point sticking out and then while it was still in the board they
would demonstrate writing with it. By the way, a few years ago I was doing some marketing for the Locum Tenens company I worked for. The pens that we got to hand out were very nice with padded finger grips and really tough. The \cheap\ ones were 69 cents and the expensive ones were 99 cents, all metal and both of them used cross refills.

guerilla gardener in South Central LA

Hopefully this video will be contagious and spread like  a pandemic…… There is no good reason for the hunger here in America. While we are about this, let us not forget all the wild food that grows—like dandelions, milkweed, purslane to name but a few.
BTW you can contact your local County Extension Agent at the court house, to find out about the Master Gardener program- in Cheyenne area that would be Catherine Wisner- JJ and I have had her classes before and I can not think of anyone who does a better job. If you are or will be traveling near Denver CO you can contact Kate Armstrong of for information on wild edible plants. AND you may consider this a personal recommendation for both of these ladies.
Guerilla gardening is the practice of growing food stuff in un-conventional ways or locations such as what is depicted in the video. This is of course from a modern civilized standpoint. Down through the ages this was actually the normal way of doing things. An example would be the American
Indians even as late as the 1970’s
Your kids and grandkids would benefit greatly from learning this sort of thing— and so will you.

Please comment in the comment section so that everyone can learn. To start a new topic you could use the contact us form on our main page at www.PrepareSurviveThrive.US or send an e-mail to Office@PrepareSurviveThrive.US


Now that we have the ground work laid out, here is a use scenario.

We will take a town of about 60,000 people, the whole county has maybe 75,000 people total. The area is divided into Wards for easier administration. Each ward has a leadership structure set up and they have a formal mutual aid agreement with all the other wards. [this is a civilian group set up to assist, but not replace the police, EMS and fire departments who have HAMs –who communicate with the wards in town AND other cities as needed- sitting along side the dispatchers in the EOC] .

For this discussion we will assume that there are 6 – 9 wards in this town.

In each ward most of the people involved would have CB radios, a few may decide to also have FRS/GMRS for limited use in some of their teams. The people with CBs would have range of maybe 5 miles but could be up to 15 miles, would communicate with their ward mates and their ward EOC. The ward EOC could be in a central location OR as a more practical matter a main ward EOC with 1 or 2 alternate EOCs so that the radio operators can work from their homes in a disaster or if one of the ward EOCs is knocked out. At the ward level the communications people would have both CBs so that they could talk with their ward mates and most likely 2 meter HAM radios to talk with all of the EOCs in town including the city’s main EOC. The city’s main EOC of course would have 2 meter ham radios and at least one of the longer range 20 to 160 meter radios – what ever frequency range that has been stipulated. The city’s main EOC also has the radios for law enforcement, EMS and fire. The city, county and state has mobile EOC too.

This is an overview and things would have to be worked out locally on the city / ward level.

We of course would like to hear YOUR thoughts on this topic.


And now comes the assumed anachronism, the CB radio made famous in the ‘Smoky and the Bandit’. The Citizens Band radio is alive and well as evidenced by Wal-Mart still selling them. Wal-mart would NOT be carrying them if they were not turning a profit consistently.  I was talking with the manager of that department recently and he said that locally they were selling on average 20 a month. For under $60.00 you can be up and running with a 40 channel radio, magna-mount antenna and a cigarette lighter power plug. Or you can go to any truck stop and shop for a bunch of different radio systems. You can also get a ‘side band’ radio that splits the signal so that you effectively have 120 channels in the CB family. As a practical matter you do not need a license to use CBs.

CBs are great for chatting and passing on useful information too. They are also great for local area comms. Today you can get road info from the truckers. When you go to a new town – when you are travelling- you can get on the CB for ‘local’ info.

We are NOT going to discus the use of Marine band radios on dry land as currently it is illegal to use them that way. Business or commercial band radios are limited and you still need a license to use them. All that being said, in a true life or limb emergency the FCC says that you CAN use any form of communication to get help. [if anyone happens to be listening to that frequency is another matter]


COMMs part 1

Both landlines and cell towers have limited battery back up, some have generators. At any rate they will function for a while during a power outage. So having a plain land line phone for at least ONE of your house phones is a great idea. So is having a car charger or other way to keep your cell phone working from your end.

All of the following come in hand held [walkie-talkies or handi-talkies ] vehicle mounted and home / base stations. The difference in configuration has nothing to do with the frequencies that they work on.

FRS / GRMS are ok for very close range. They are no more ‘secure’ than any other radio except for the very limited range. These would do well for a highly populated / dense area such as New Your City.

HAM radio is a great idea too. Talking around the block or around the world! They can be very expensive or really economical depending on what bells and whistles you want. With a license you can work on low power, 1/2 watt units clear up to 1,500 watts on the same frequencies. There is one multiband radio that I would like to have a couple of. It is man-packable, has an internal battery or can hook up to any 12 volt power source, the antenna can be rolled on to a spool, it works on 160 meter band all the way down to 70CM. This is an extremely wide range for a single radio. With this radio you can talk clearly around the world. I have heard folks talking from Scotland to New Zealand. The maximum wattage that it has to transmit on is 5 [five] watts. Each of the [3] levels of license for HAMs are cheap – So for easily less than $100.00 you could have all 3 levels  of licenses. Google ‘HAM radio club’ to find a group near you to help you get licensed and set up with a radio to start out.

Not everyone in a given area of operation or group needs a HAM radio. In fact it is a good idea to NOT have everyone in a group area on HAM radio. One of the problems with everyone working on the same radio frequencies is confusion. Think of it as the old ‘party lines’ back in the days when the phone systems had a group of people on the same phone line. If 10 people had to share the same phone, you can imagine if they ALL talked at the same time. Now, hold that thought and think of the party game called ‘telephone’ where you have a simple message written down on a piece of paper. You whisper that message to the first person who then tells it to the next and on down the line until they get to the last person who tells the group what he got told. You will not recognize it.

Another issue is that in any group there are a bunch of conversations going on that are not ‘private’ but at the same time does not pertain to everybody….. sort of like when you are on a yahoo group site. The nice thing about cross talking or party lines is that if you have something to add you can jump in and say whatever.



How To  Plant Your Garden

First,  you  Come to the garden alone,  while the dew is still on the roses.
1.    Peace of mind
         2.    Peace of heart
         3.    Peace of soul
1. Squash gossip
         2. Squash indifference
         3. Squash grumbling
         4. Squash selfishness
1. Lettuce be faithful
         2. Lettuce be kind
         3. Lettuce be patient
         4. Lettuce really love one another
        Plant a few rows of beets as well:  
        1. Beet Satan
        2. Beet corruption
        3. Beet idleness
1. Turnip for meetings
         2. Turnip for service
         3. Turnip to help one another
        1. Thyme for God
        2. Thyme for each other
        3. Thyme for family
        4. Thyme for friends


    Two  blondes were sipping their Piermont Café coffee, when a truck  went  past loaded up with rolls of  sod.
   “I’m  going to do that when I win the lottery,” announced Blonde  #1.

    “Do  what?” asked Blonde #2.

    “Send my lawn out to be mowed.”

Lavabit defies FBI order

Lavabit defies FBI order, stands up to national security state

Photo: AP

WASHINGTON, August 12, 2013 — We would all like our online communications to be secure. There’s a substantial market for secure, encrypted email services, mostly composed of legitimate business users. Up until Thursday, Texas-based Lavabit LLC had provided those services to almost 400,000 users for a decade. One of those users was Edward Snowden.

On Thursday, the FBI served Lavabit with an order demanding access to Snowden’s secure email account, presumably with a National Security Letter authorized under the USA PATRIOT Act. The National Security Letters are one of the most controversial aspects of the act, essentially blanket search warrants requiring little probable cause. They give law enforcement such broad powers that the threat of their use has bullied many Internet Service Providers into preemptively taking websites offline and turning over private emails to avoid further consequences. Some may have even cooperated by installing government spyware on their systems, allowing the NSA to monitor all of their customers’ private online communications.

SEE RELATED: NSA spying illegal, even under the unconstitutional Patriot Act

When faced with this threat, Lavabit’s owner, Ladar Levison, did not comply and denied the government the access they demanded. Placing his guarantee of security for his customers as his highest priority, he chose to shut down his entire company rather than turn over any emails. In a strongly worded statement which is now the only thing on Lavabit’s website, Levison wrote:

“I have been forced to make a difficult decision: to become complicit in crimes against the American people or walk away from nearly ten years of hard work by shutting down Lavabit. After significant soul searching, I have decided to suspend operations.”

He also reveals that he has been placed under a gagged order forbidding him from even talking about the action taken against him by the government, a power provided to accompany the use of National Security Letters and a clear violation of the First Amendment to the Constitution. He is apparently pursuing a legal response with the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. He closes with a powerful indictment of the United States government:

 “This experience has taught me one very important lesson: without congressional action or a strong judicial precedent, I would strongly recommend against anyone trusting their private data to a company with physical ties to the United States.”

SEE RELATED: The NSA: True lies in the national security state

Others are listening to Levison’s warning. The following day, Silent Circle, another secure online communication company, shut down its encrypted email service in anticipation of similar government persecution. It seems likely that this is just the beginning of a trend which will see this entire industry seeking offshore havens where they can safely provide the security which their customers demand. Most of these customers are technology companies, not spies or criminals. They want protection from industrial espionage in an era of increased cyber-spying from many sources.

The situation with Lavabit adds a new dimension to the Edward Snowden story. It offers us Ladar Levison as a hero and a champion for civil liberties against the out of control growth of the security state. It also reminds us that the victims of the degradation of our rights are not just idealistic whistleblowers or even real terrorists. The negative consequences are now spilling over to legitimate businesses and their innocent customers whose personal property — and emails are personal property — is now at risk through no fault of their own.

Other countries are now issuing warnings to their citizens not to take their internet services business to companies based in the United States. German Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich recommended that “whoever fears their communication is being intercepted in any way should use services that don’t go through American servers.” The Technology and Innovation Foundation has estimated that the chilling effect of heightened cyber-snooping and corporate cooperation with the NSA in the U.S. could be a loss of as much of $35 billion in annual business in the cloud computing industry alone.

Edward Snowden summarized the situation well in a statement on the Lavabit shutdown:

“The President, Congress, and the Courts have forgotten that the costs of bad policy are always borne by ordinary citizens, and it is our job to remind them that there are limits to what we will pay. America cannot succeed as a country where individuals like Mr. Levison have to relocate their businesses abroad to be successful. Employees and leaders at Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Yahoo, Apple, and the rest of our internet titans must ask themselves why they aren’t fighting for our interests the same way small businesses are.”

During the congressional recess this issue ought to be the prime topic at townhalls around the country. We should ask our legislators whether they are going to continue to come up short, as they did on the vote for the Conyers-Amash amendment to put some common sense limits on the NSA, or whether they will stand up for the privacy and free speech rights that every citizen in this nation is inherently entitled to and guaranteed by the Bill of Rights.

We have come to the point where we have to decide which America we are going to live in: the one founded on the principles of Washington, Jefferson, Adams and Madison; or the one born of unreasoning fear. Ben Franklin warned of that second America when he wrote these famous words: “Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.”


Please comment in the comment section so that everyone can learn. To start a new topic you could use the contact us form on our main page at www.PrepareSurviveThrive.US or send an e-mail to Office@PrepareSurviveThrive.US

Headings and catagories

HEADINGS of categories for files and postings to make them easier to file & look up.

Mobile (gas masks – and the tough part is knowing when
you need it)
Retreat system (HEPA, bio, chemical, UV, positive
pressure directional flow)
Water purification, mobile and fixed, ceramic filters, reverse osmosis.
Well or water storage system  (treatments) Sanitary System
Storage (best types to buy, best
system to store your own)
Production (seeds, livestock, square foot gardening
to small scale farming)
Location (where to be, given where
your life is)
Design (meeting the most likely threats in your
area, concrete usually best choice)
Energy (storage, generation of
electricity mainly, AC and DC)
Heat (heating while being able to maintain
your air tight system)
Specialty Clothing, boots – besides
your military surplus and hunting gear, what else is there, and what truly  works best
Security – surveillance systems, perimeter defenses,
CO, fire, alarm systems, firearms, other weapons
Medical  cabinet and supplies you should have, first aid kit,
medication, etc. Health –  besides food, what else can you do for preventive medicine, herbs, etc.
Ham radio, short wave, CB, satellite, internet,
telephone, all band radio, TV, scanners
10  TOOLS Tool chest – do you have everything you need to fix
everything you  have?
Survival skills are somewhat unique, hence to
have a library
or resource center for information would be a good idea.
This also includes various domestic
skills like sewing, etc. There is also
the survival mindset.

Please comment in the comment section so that everyone can learn. To start a new topic you could use the contact us form on our main page at www.PrepareSurviveThrive.US or send an e-mail to Office@PrepareSurviveThrive.US


I wish that I had remembered about this over the years. ;]

Last year a friend told me about eating milkweed. Then later in the year I was talking with a relative and mentioned it, she says— WELL, don’t you remember when the Indians taught us how to cook them. Mom used to take the real young pods and make them like creamed peas.

Last year it was too late to do anything about it so I had to WAIT a year.

Now that I have tried milkweed pods, I have to tell you that they ARE GREAT! Raw tastes like a salad green. ‘K’ and I liked it best fried with bacon – of course EVERYTHING tastes better with bacon. Younger pods are more tender than the older ones.

My research indicates that the pods can be boiled like broccoli, so I would think that a cheese sauce would go good with the pods. The young sprouts are supposed to be like asparagus and the young leaves can be cooked like any greens. Back in WWII the ‘fluff’ was collected to make life jackets for aircrew members.   

What are your thoughts and or experiences?

Please comment in the comment section so that everyone can learn. To start a new topic you could use the contact us form on our main page at www.PrepareSurviveThrive.US or send an e-mail to Office@PrepareSurviveThrive.US