Category Archives: Guest Posts

How To Make Your Food Storage Look Amazing

How to Make Your Food Storage Look Amazing

You’ve decided that food storage is a necessity in your life, but that doesn’t mean that it has to be unsightly! You don’t need five gallon buckets taking over your kitchen or drums of water holding all the available space in your garage. After all, your food storage is here to stay! Instead, design a system that is attractive as well as functional to help give your food storage a longer shelf life instead of running it out of your home in frustration.

Develop a System

It’s great that you have enough spaghetti sauce and honey to last your family for a year or two, but none of that does you any good if you don’t know how to access it when you need it. Develop an inventory system that keeps all of a single kind of food together. Make sure that you keep fresh, new food at the back while older food that is closer to its sell-by date is pushed to the front. It might take a little longer to put it away that way when you return from the grocery store, but it will prevent you from having to throw away food that’s no longer edible.

Choose Containers You Love

It can be tempting to choose cheap, practical food storage containers that you don’t particularly like. After all, you’re on a budget! Taking the leap and purchasing food storage containers that are attractive as well as practical, however, will make it easier for you to maintain your food storage practices over time. Make sure that essential emergency foods are in clearly labeled containers so that you’ll be able to access them quickly at need.

Devote a Space to Food Storage

Whether it’s an extra-large pantry designed specifically with food storage in mind or a wall of your garage dedicated to food storage, you need to have space set aside that belongs to your food, water, and toiletries. You aren’t stockpiling for a short-term shortage that will occur as predicted and then disappear again. Food storage is a long-term goal that, with any luck, you’ll never actually have to use for its intended purpose. That means that you need to have a specific area devoted to these items. Instead of piling food storage haphazardly, organize it neatly in its space. That alone will make it seem more appealing in appearance.

Label Your Shelves

Do you frequently have help putting away the groceries? If you want your food storage to stay organized, you need to have a system that everyone in your household can understand. When you label your shelves, everyone can easily see where each food storage item goes. Don’t forget a reminder that the most recent food goes at the back, not at the front! This will keep your food storage continuously organized.

Make Your Kitchen Part of Your Food Storage

You don’t want the food in your food storage to go to waste. That means that you should be regularly using the items in your food storage and replacing them. For that to happen, your food storage has to be conveniently located. If you have space in your kitchen, consider making it part of your food storage area! Use your cabinets to the best possible advantage and consistently stock them based on the first-in, first-out rule (FIFO) instead of shoving new items in from the front. There’s no reason to have the same food in your kitchen and in your food storage area! Use your kitchen to your full advantage. This is especially crucial if you have a smaller kitchen.

Your food storage area doesn’t have to be an eyesore! By keeping it neat and organized, you can ensure that your food storage is simply part of your home. When guests visit, they’ll be amazed by your organization and preparation, not disturbed by your hoarding tendencies–which might just be enough to convince them to start food storage systems of their own.

About The Author

This article was a guest contribution from Lee Flynn who is a routine contributor here. Lee is a freelance writer and expert in emergency food preparedness and food storage.

Selecting The Best Tactical Vest

What To Look For When Selecting The Best Tactical Vest?

Summary

Tactical gear should be focused on maintaining a balance between protection, mobility, and comfort. Tactical gear, like a tactical vest, is usually used in perilous circumstances by the police and/or military personnel to protect them and keep equipment at the ready at all times.

In addition to their functionality and organization, the usability of a tactical vest is also very important. There are a few necessary elements to consider by buyers when looking to purchase the right tactical vest.

Tactical Vest

Introduction

Self-protection is an inevitable need for police, military, and preparedness minded personnel. As such, you need to consider a few important things when buying a tactical vest, whether it is for protection, organizing gear, or both. Have a look…

Elements to Consider for an Efficient Tactical Vest

Almost all tactical gear, including the tactical vest, should be evaluated for the three basic functions of usability, mobility, and protection. When looking at these functions in a tactical vest, start by trying to understand the key essentials listed below and how these elements come together to serve as an efficient tactical vest. This understanding will simplify your buying process.

Molle or Not to Molle?

The first question that arises when it comes to buying your tactical vest is whether to MOLLE or not to MOLLE?

The pre-configured tactical vest has a lower initial cost and is typically lightweight. MOLLE vests are primarily known for their versatility and easy customization. Choosing a pre-configured vest is suitable if you are required, or choose, to carry a single weapon like and AR or AK rifle and your pistol. If your requirements dictate that you need to carry multiple weapon systems, or a more exotic weapon system, a MOLLE vest with interchangeable pouches will be the best option.

In addition to being capable of being configured for specific weapon systems, another advantage of the MOLLE tactical vest is the ability to customize your vest for additional capabilities such as communications equipment, a first aid kit, etc.

Sizing

Although some tactical vests come in one size only, most are available in multiple sizes or are adjustable in order to fit easily and allow maximum flexibility. For the tactical vest that is sized, you can get various sizes including small (chest size 34-35), medium (38-40), large (42-44), etc. An important consideration when selecting the size of your tactical vest is to keep in mind what you will be wearing your vest over. If you need additional room for clothing and/or equipment under your tactical vest, ensure that you keep this in mind when selecting your size.

Durability

When buying the right tactical vest, one should consider the environment and location where they are required to wear their vest. For those who need it frequently to crawl around, a durable vest is the best fit. Frequent usage requires a vest which is able to endure all the elements, along with the extreme wear and tear by the wearer. Whether you plan on frequent use of your tactical vest or not, choosing a vest that is durable will serve you best in the long run.

Duration of Use

Another important consideration is how long the wearer will wear their vest. Short duration or wearing the vest for only a few hours will decide how much load-bearing gear you can carry with you for  the entire day. This short wear test can tell you plenty about your vest and if it is truly the best match for your needs. If you can’t wear your vest for a few hours, you definitely won’t be able to wear it over the course of several days.

Long periods of use also may reinforce the practicality of a MOLLE tactical vest which allows the user to customize the configuration to facilitate even weight and maximum comfort.

Role on the Field

Often, most of tactical vest owners are required to act at least partially as a rifleman when out in the field, meaning they will be carrying a rifle as their primary and a pistol as their secondary weapon. In such cases, lightweight vests will help to provide the enhanced usability and mobility required for these duties. The flexibility of a MOLLE vest will also enhance an individuals ability to serve in multiple capacities.

Type of Gear on the Vest

It is important for buyers to consider the type of gear they will be carrying on their tactical vest. A hydration carrier will be an essential addition when outside for longer periods of time or in hot weather. Utility pouches also provide a way for important items to be kept close at hand. If using a weapon system, magazine pouches are vital for keeping additional ammunition at the ready.

While searching for the right tactical vest, don’t forget that what works for others might not necessarily work for you. Try different systems out to see for yourself what is the best fit for your needs. Good luck.

About the Author:  This article was a guest submission from 911Gear.ca, a premium dealer of tactical equipment in Ontario, Canada. Located online, 911Gear.ca offers shipping to both Canada and the United States. Don’t miss out on their extensive selection of tactical equipment for law enforcement, military, EMS, security professionals, corrections officers, and preppers.

Flood Preparation: 5 Essential Tools to Survive

Flood Preparation:                                                                                           5 Essential Tools to Survive

Whether you have lived for some time in an area prone to flooding or you are new to flood preparation, there is always something new to learn about how to stay safe in a flood. In fact, the city of Houston, Texas, has a longstanding history of flooding, and yet several people died and thousands of homes and cars were flooded in the recent Memorial Day weekend floods.

Flood Preparation

Knowing Your Actual Risk
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), flash flooding is the leading cause of weather related mortalities in the United States today. More than 200 deaths annually can be directly linked to flooding, both flash floods and flood waters that build more slowly (such as flooding that comes from an over-full bayou or river, or flooding that overflows a levee or dam such as what occurred in New Orleans). Also, depending on where you live, an estimated 50 to 75 percent of those deaths are related to people staying in vehicles during flood conditions.

Tool #1: Do not enter areas of high water.
In Houston, Mayor Annise Parker posted emergency messages on the highways that stated, “If you see high water, turn around – don’t drown.” This means do not try to drive through, walk through, swim through, boat through, or otherwise enter high water areas. (Tom adds: Even if you don’t drown, there is a good chance you could be washed away and valuable resources will be used and lives endangered in an attempt to rescue you because of your actions.)

Tool #2: Keep emergency supplies on hand in a waterproof bag.
The type of things you may need in a flood situation include candles, matches, antiseptic, bottled water, a first aid kit, gloves, face masks, mosquito spray and netting, tape, safety pins, benadryl, basic toiletries, I.D.s and a source of cash, and a list of emergency numbers.

Tool #3: Plan for emergency food supplies.
In the event it takes rescue teams some time to reach you, you will absolutely need to have clean water and emergency food rations on hand. Freeze dried foods, energy bars, and other emergency rations can play a key part in waiting out the worst of a flood. Be aware that a flood may only last a few minutes or hours, but it can still claim everything you own, so you will need to have emergency food and water to survive!

Tool #4: Have an emergency plan in place for kids and the elderly….and everyone.
Whether you live with or apart from your loved ones, it is very wise to put some kind of plan in place to keep in touch during flood situations, and especially to know who is taking charge of the safety of kids and elderly relatives.

Decide where each of you will go, and where and when you will meet up, in advance, then do your best to review the plan at least once annually to be sure your plans are still up to date and take into account everyone in your family who may need extra assistance.

Tip #5: Do your best to secure your home and belongings as quickly as possible… and get OUT of your vehicle right away!
If you make it a habit to watch the weather reports and receive emergency weather alerts as soon as they break, you will have more time to prepare your home, move your car or boat, secure your belongings in a high, dry place, and move yourself and your loved ones to safety before the flood waters hit. Sometimes – as with the estimated 19 people who died in the recent flooding across Texas and Oklahoma – having even a few minutes of advance warning can make all the difference! Finally, knowing when to walk away from your vehicle can be key to surviving a flood.

When you make a regular habit of monitoring weather alerts and you follow these five tips to pre-plan for facing flood conditions in your area, your payoff may be saving your life and the lives of your loved ones.

This article was a guest contribution from Lee Flynn. Lee is a freelance writer and an expert in emergency food preparedness and food storage.

photo credit: the mill via photopin (license)

The Core Concept Behind the Assault on Your Freedom

The following is a guest submission from J. Roberts about one of the lesser discussed beliefs held by those of “higher” learning.

The Core Concept Behind the Assault on Your Freedom

“In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like would fit the bill….All these dangers are caused by human intervention, and it is only through changed attitudes and behavior that they can be overcome. The real enemy then, is humanity itself.”

–        Club of Rome, 1993

In 1894, the Times of London estimated that in under 60 years, every street in the city would be buried nine feet deep in horse manure. Similarly, a New York prognosticator in the 1890s predicted by 1930 the citizens of that not-so-fair city would see that selfsame horse excrement rise three stories high if nothing were done. Neither the Times nor the New York diviners had computer models, but undoubtedly, if they had, given their underlying assumptions, the conclusion would have been the same. Garbage in, garbage out, as the programmers say.

Linear predictions such as the above were first formalized by the Rev. Thomas Malthus (1776–1834) who noted that population is not always immediately limited by food and energy, writing in his 1798 An Essay on the Principle of Population, that “The power of population is indefinitely greater than the power in the earth to produce subsistence for man” and “That the superior power of population is repressed, and the actual population kept equal to the means of subsistence, by (the mechanisms of) misery and vice.” Malthus’ writings need much more nuance for the scholar reading this, of course, but in short, the crux of the issue was the well-known quote that human population increases geometrically, while food supply is only able to increase arithmetically. Thus, if population is left unchecked, misery, starvation and death will result. And in large part, much of what you see today in the socio-political realm, is built around this one basic presupposition. To illustrate the point, bear with me as I cite a large number of well-known leaders and groups who parrot the exact philosophy of Malthus, only in more modern garb. Scan or skip the quotes as you need, but my purpose in providing the quantity of citations is to illustrate just how well entrenched this philosophy is throughout our culture.

– “The present vast overpopulation, now far beyond the world carrying capacity, cannot be answered by future reductions in the birth rate due to contraception, sterilization and abortion, but must be met in the present by the reduction of numbers presently existing. This must be done by whatever means necessary.” Initiative for the United Nations ECO-92 Earth Charter (of course the authors of this are excepted, presumably)

– A cancer is an uncontrolled multiplication of cells; the population explosion is an uncontrolled multiplication of people. Treating only the symptoms of cancer may make the victim more comfortable at first, but eventually he dies—often horribly. A similar fate awaits a world with a population explosion if only the symptoms are treated. We must shift our efforts from treatment of the symptoms to the cutting out of the cancer. The operation will demand many apparently brutal and heartless decisions. The pain may be intense. But the disease is so far advanced that only with radical surgery does the patient have a chance of survival. Stanford Professor Paul Ehrlich, The Population Bomb. Ehrlich is a former 1970s global cooling fanatic, which demanded development and population restrictions, who a few decades later converted to global warming fanatic, which also requires population restrictions. Ehrlich predicted the world would come to a catastrophic denouement from global cooling in the 1970s – but of course he has now converted the mechanism for our destruction to global warming. Whatever fits the narrative.

– “We have to take away from humans in the long run their reproductive autonomy as the only way to guarantee the advancement of mankind.” Francis Crick, discoverer of the double-helix structure of DNA

– “One America burdens the earth much more than twenty Bangladeshes. This is a terrible thing to say in order to stabilize world population, we must eliminate 350,000 people per day. It is a horrible thing to say, but it’s just as bad not to say it.” Jacques Cousteau, UNESCO Courier (Jacques, of course, with all his globe-trotting, was equivalent a zillion Bangladeshes –though only half as bad as Obama’s regular vacations – but as Orwell warned us, in the socialist paradise, some of us will be “more equal” than the others.)

– “A reasonable estimate for an industrialized world society at the present North American material standard of living would be 1 billion. At the more frugal European standard of living, 2 to 3 billion would be possible.” United Nations, Global Biodiversity Assessment

– “A total population of 250-300 million people, a 95% decline would be ideal.” Ted Turner, founder of CNN and major United Nations contributor. (Ted…. are you volunteering to “check out” first?)

– Noted professor Eric Pianka declared that the Earth would be better off if nine out of 10 people were to die. “The Earth’s population is growing,” said Eric Pianka of the University of Texas, who was named the 2006 Distinguished Texas Scientist by the Texas Academy of Science. “We will see a point when we reach the carrying capacity – there aren’t enough resources.” Pianka believes the planet’s current population of 6.5 billion is much too high, and 700 million would be the ideal number. He says people are turning the Earth into “fat, human biomass” and leaving the planet “parched,” as the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons quoted him as saying. According to Pianka, the most likely instrument for killing 90 percent of the Earth’s human population is the Ebola virus, after it evolves the capacity for airborne transmission: “War and famine would not do. Instead, disease offered the most efficient and fastest way to kill the billions that must soon die if the population crisis is to be solved. AIDS is not an efficient killer because it is too slow. My favorite candidate for eliminating 90 percent of the world’s population is airborne Ebola (Ebola Reston), because it is both highly lethal and it kills in days, instead of years. We’ve got airborne diseases with 90 percent mortality in humans. Killing humans. Think about that. You know, the bird flu’s good, too. For everyone who survives, he will have to bury nine.” As with Mr. Turner, there are no reports that Dr. Pianka is volunteering to help out the situation by going first.

– Finnish writer Pentti Linkola is the classic uber-greenie, who wants to reduce Earth’s population to 500 million and abandon modern technology (presumably he is getting his message out via smoke signals) who wrote: “What to do, when a ship carrying a hundred passengers suddenly capsizes and there is only one lifeboat? When the lifeboat is full, those who hate life will try to load it with more people and sink the lot. Those who love and respect life will take the ship’s axe and sever the extra hands that cling to the sides.” And of course, America is the core of the problem: “The United States symbolises the worst ideologies in the world: growth and freedom” Adds Linkola, and “Any dictatorship would be better than modern democracy. There cannot be so incompetent a dictator that he would show more stupidity than a majority of the people. The best dictatorship would be one where lots of heads would roll and where government would prevent any economic growth. We will have to learn from the history of revolutionary movements — the national socialists (Nazis), the Finnish Stalinists, from the many stages of the Russian revolution, from the methods of the Red Brigades — and forget our narcissistic selves.” Linkola has also publicly called for climate change deniers be “re-educated” in eco-gulags and that the vast majority of humans be killed, with the rest enslaved and controlled by a green police state, with people forcibly sterilized, cars confiscated and travel restricted to members of the elite (what? You expected the leftist elite to eat their own cooking?) No word from Linkola as to who will control the controllers, of course. A fellow Finnish environmentalist writer, Martin Kreiggeist, hails Linkola’s call for eco-gulags and oppression as “a solution,” calling for people to “take up the axes” in pursuit of killing off the third world. Kreiggeist wants fellow eco-fascists to “act on” Linkola’s call for mass murder in order to solve overpopulation. Linkola and Kreiggeist come from a long line of those that would just that! The Black Book of Communism, by Courtois, et al, says various flavor of the left murdered 100 million last century, while Dr. RJ Rummel, Univ. of Hawaii, puts the number as high as 160 million (the vast majority murdered by the left). See his web site, or take the time to review his magnum opus, Death by Government, which provides details on how he came up with his numbers.

– “If I were reincarnated I would wish to be returned to earth as a killer virus to lower human population levels.” Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, Leader of the World Wildlife Fund

– “Malthus has been vindicated; reality is finally catching up with Malthus. The Third World is overpopulated, it’s an economic mess, and there’s no way they could get out of it with this fast-growing population. Our philosophy is: back to the village.” Dr. Arne Schiotz, World Wildlife Fund Director of Conservation.

– “There is a single theme behind all our work–we must reduce population levels. Either governments do it our way, through nice clean methods, or they will get the kinds of mess that we have in El Salvador, or in Iran or in Beirut. Population is a political problem. Once population is out of control, it requires authoritarian government, even fascism, to reduce it….” and “Our program in El Salvador didn’t work. The infrastructure was not there to support it. There were just too goddamned many people…. To really reduce population, quickly, you have to pull all the males into the fighting and you have to kill significant numbers of fertile age females….” The quickest way to reduce population is through famine, like in Africa, or through disease like the Black Death….” Thomas Ferguson, State Department Office of Population Affairs. “Too many goddamed people.” I think that expresses your sentiments perfectly, Mr. Ferguson. (“Godammed people” pretty much sums up the whole issue, but again, Mr. Ferguson probably doesn’t consider himself “people” – he is undoubtedly special.)

– “Depopulation should be the highest priority of foreign policy towards the third world, because the US economy will require large and increasing amounts of minerals from abroad, especially from less developed countries”. Dr. Henry Kissinger. Kissinger also noted “The world’s population needs to be reduced by 50%,” and “The elderly are useless eaters” Kissinger is 91 – but no word yet if he plans to “check out” early. Y’know… just to do his part and all.

– “Frankly I had thought that at the time Roe was decided, there was concern about population growth and particularly growth in populations that we don’t want to have too many of.” Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Nope, no word from the leftist media on this racist comment. And never will be, either.

– “The Planetary Regime might be given responsibility for determining the optimum population for the world and for each region and for arbitrating various countries’ shares within their regional limits. Control of population size might remain the responsibility of each government, but the Regime would have some power to enforce the agreed limits.” Obama’s science czar John P. Holdren, cited from Ecoscience. Holdren is a current global warmer cult leader – while in the 1970s, he joined Ehrlich as a fanatic global cooling alarmist. Any mechanism to control the population, you know!

– “It is easier to kill a million people rather than trying to control a million people… people are fighting back…our capacity to impose control over humanity is at an historical low…” Zbignew Brzezinsi

– As just one final example of hundreds of quotes I could have included, the Club of Rome in 1993 stated in their The First Global Revolution, that “In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like would fit the bill….All these dangers are caused by human intervention, and it is only through changed attitudes and behavior that they can be overcome. The real enemy then, is mankind.” Came up with the idea”… as opposed to “the facts led us to the conclusion.”

The fact of the matter is, as Robert Zubrin observed, to today’s Malthusians, “… each new life is unwelcome, each unregulated thought or act is menace, every person is fundamentally the enemy of every other person, and each race or nation is the enemy of every other race or nation.” Yes, we are back to the disproved socialist assumption that life and economics are a zero sum game, but this assumption is not up for debate – at least among the powers that be (and for those of you who think of Thomas Kuhn’s famed book The Structure of Scientific Revolution, which deals with how intellectuals become victims of group think just as easily as your local “Yes we can” chanters, you are exactly right). And it is not just your life that is unwelcome, but your financial status as well, until you not-so-mercifully decide – or it is decided for you- to put off this mortal coil. The economic side of the matter is put most clearly by the World Wildlife Fund Living Plant Report of 2012, which Lewis Page summarizes in the May 16, 2012 edition of the Register that “economic growth should be abandoned, (and) citizens of the world’s wealthy nations should prepare for poverty.” Individual rights are verboten, of course, given the Malthusian threat to the earth. As Harvey Ruvin, Vice-chair of International Committee for Local Environment Initiatives (ICLEI), a group that wants to impose the green agenda on everyone has noted, “Individual rights must take a back seat to the collective.” Pol Pot, move over… but please do not concern yourself that Obama and his cronies might have their tee times or uber-luxe vacations impacted.

Perhaps the best known antecedent of the ideas quoted above comes from the National Socialist (Nazi) T4 euthanasia programme, run by Hitler’s doctor, Karl Brandt. As early as 1929 Hitler proposed 700,000 of the weakest Germans be “removed” per year. By Aug. 1939, every doctor and midwife was notified they must register all children born with genetic defects, retroactive to 1936. The doomed were to “give their lives for the greater cause.” Nazis used injections; then later – being the ever-efficient National Socialists they were – used carbon monoxide. They would then send a letter to the parents, telling them that their child was dead (hey, it depends on what the definition of “was” was, right?) from pneumonia, and already cremated.

As you know, those responsible for the T4 programme were condemned and punished at the Nuremburg Trials after World War II. Importantly, ignorance or “just following orders” was not an excuse during these court proceedings. Most interestingly, individuals like Kissinger were with the Allied army as they fought Germany during this time, and should have zero excuse. Yet today, the Nazi wannabes are back at. For example, Drs. Francesca Minerva and Alberto Giubilini just published an article in a respected, academic journal about “after birth abortion” (sic) in the Journal of Medical Ethics (source), while Dr. Peter Singer of Yale believes that children should be able to be killed up to two years old (yet all the while he refuses to euthanize his elderly mother, who is horribly incapacitated with Alzheimers). It is, as the philosopher/theologian Os Guinness once noted, that “while all philosophies are arguable; not all are livable.”

You are now aware of the impact of Malthusian philosophy on population and resources, and have a general idea of who and what is behind it – which is pretty much the bulk of Hollywood, academia, the lamestream media, Al Gore and his acolytes, Agenda 21 types, and your Hilary-esque political, social and economic betters. You may have also surmised, correctly, that this Malthusian presupposition is going to directly impact you, your health, your wealth, your family, and your now nasty, short and brutish life.

Here we come to the crux of this article. Is the Malthusian assumption actually valid? Or is it just one of those faux truisms accepted by a culture for generations, such as the thinking that Chinese girls’ feet should always be bound, or the Boston Red Sox could never win the World Series after they traded Babe Ruth to the Yankees. Has anyone actually conducted a real life, boots-on-the-ground examination of the Malthusian assumptions?

As a matter of fact, someone has. But before we go there, a few preliminaries. Were you aware that between 30 and 50 percent of all food produced globally, equivalent to two billion tons, is thrown away each year according to a recent report written by the UK-based Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IME), titled ‘Global Food; Waste Not, Want Not? The problem is not with production, it is with distribution. Might I suggest that before we ponder throwing away human lives, as per Dr. Pianka above, we start by making sure food isn’t thrown away? Similarly, were you aware that three times the current population of the world could fit in the state of Oklahoma, which has an area of 69,903 square miles? In this case, one square mile will accommodate 278,784 people if each person were allowed 100 square feet. At that rate the state of Oklahoma could accommodate a 19.49 billion people— almost three times the earth’s current population of 6.4 billion – with the entire acreage of the US left over to farm, hike, populate with office buildings, put solar panels on, etc. The highly quoted scientist, and author of The Skeptical Environmentalist’s Guide to Global Warming, Bjorn Lomborg, takes the issue of trash under the same microscope, noting that the entire waste produced by the United States in the 21st century could fit into a square 100 feet thick and 28 km along each side, or 0.009% of the total surface of the United States

Lomborg also considers pollution from different angles. He notes that air pollution in wealthy nations has steadily decreased in recent decades, and finds that air pollution levels are highly linked to economic development, with the less developed countries polluting most. Again, Lomborg argues that faster growth in emerging countries would help them reduce their air pollution levels, and suggests that devoting resources to reduce the levels of specific air pollutants would provide the greatest health benefits and save the largest number of lives (per amount of money spent), continuing an already decades-long improvement in air quality in most developed countries. Similarly concerning water pollution, Lomborg notes again that this is connected with economic progress – not bumping off people, as the ignorant Georgia Guidestones imply.

Some will erroneously conflate being profligate, ignorant, wasteful with those who disagree with the Malthusians. That is an utterly gross misunderstanding of the issue. The point is that human life brings with it not just resource consumption, but intelligence, which is the key point in the whole debate. Going back to the horse manure issue in London, human intelligence brought about the invention of the automobile, which solved the manure issue. If the mad doctor Pianka had been around then, perhaps Henry Ford would have been intentionally bumped off by the Spanish flu before he got his auto industry in gear. Ah, but the car has created problems the Malthusian will say. And of course, the simple rejoinder is that the next step to resolve the issues brought about by the car are under way. The catalytic converter has already solved a certain percentage of the smog problem, though obviously more needs to be done. In fact, that “more to be done” is already under way. The very day this article began to be composed, a new paper in Science, reported how University of Glasgow scientists have taken a major step forward in the production of hydrogen from water, using solar powered electrolysis to break the bonds between hydrogen and oxygen, the constituents of water. Dr. Dan Nocera of MIT has a similar new product, marketed by SunCatalytix, which he explains in a YouTube video. The issue is, the Univ. of Glasgow scientists and Dr. Nocera may never have come into existence were it for the Malthusians, and in fact, if the Malthusians had their way, horse poop might well actually be 9 feet high in London now – though of course, they presumably would have killed off much of the population to prevent the problem. The real problem is not the number of people, but rather the corruption of law, politics (yes, Harry Reid, we are looking at you!), distribution processes (which are most efficiently left to Adam Smith-style private initiative, not USSR-style central planning), the slowing of patent granting (of which I have personal experience), socialism-caused poverty, and more. The problem is not population, per se.

We now come to the piece de resistance about the Malthusian misunderstanding, which it is found in the famed Julian Simon/Paul Ehrlich wager – essentially a wager between whether Malthus was right, or if the ingenuity of man is more significant. Simon’s point was that “The most important benefit of population size and growth is the increase it brings to the stock of useful knowledge. Minds matter economically as much as, or more than, hands or mouths.” Simon bet the then catastrophic global coolers – who are now catastrophic global warmers – Paul Ehrlich and John Holdren in 1980 that the price of chromium, copper, nickel, tin, and tungsten would go down, not up, by Sept. 29, 1990.  In fact, all five commodities – which Ehrlich selected – went down by the targeted date. In Oct. 1990, Ehrlich mailed Julian Simon a cheque for $576.07 to settle the wager.  No word if current unelected Obama science czar Holdren chipped in any dough or not. But – as the last refuge of scientific (or economic) scoundrels – of course they trot out the old “this time will be different,” and the Malthusians, in the form of Agenda 21ers, etc. still remain in their cult-like trance.  The Wikipedia summary of the Simon/Ehrlich wager can be seen here.

The key point of this paper, which the Malthusians who deign to run your life based on their faulty assumptions miss, is that scarcity is mitigated by human intelligence and creativity. Horse poop doesn’t grow up to the trees in downtown NY or London, without some brainiac coming up with a novel solution. I will admit, however that horse apples do, apparently, grow up to the trees and beyond in the halls of academia or some bought-and-paid-for politician in Washington or Brussels.

It is true, as Orwell once noted, that “There are some ideas so absurd that only an intellectual could believe them.” Malthusianism is one that is at the top of the list.

Get Ahead of the Coming Storm

The following article is a guest submission from Carlee about getting prepared for a Hurricane, a timely submission based on the fact that I spent some time last week ensuring that I was prepared for this very type of event.

Get Ahead of the Coming Storm

Years ago hurricanes were storms that only the Deep South had to worry about. Not anymore. Whether or not you believe global warming is real or a political ruse, the fact is the ocean temperatures are increasing. The eastern seaboard and the gulf coast are particularly vulnerable. But with warmer oceans, the threat for damaging hurricanes extends all the way into the Northeast, where places like Vermont have suffered extreme flooding.

Add to the mix the growing population along the coasts and, as we’ve witnessed in recent years, you’ve got a recipe for disaster. I went down to Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina to help with cleanup and witness firsthand the destructive power of a hurricane. To put it mildly, I was awestruck by the devastation. It showed me that natural disasters are nothing to take lightly.

But we can prepare for these storms and ‘weather’ them successfully if we prepare ourselves ahead of time. As preppers, we should never allow ourselves to be caught unaware when Mother Nature throws one of her tantrums. Like any adversarial condition we may face, we should learn about hurricanes now so that if we find ourselves in the path of one, we won’t be unprepared.

Plan Ahead

Make your preparations a family affair. Sit everyone down ahead of time and make sure everyone’s involved. Prepare your plans and make sure everyone understands what to do. Even give your children responsibilities, with the proper oversight. You usually only have a few days at the most to know that a hurricane is barreling down on you, so get organized ahead of time.

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Know where your local evacuation routes are located and where local storm shelters are. If you evacuate and have young children, make sure they carry identification and contact information. Have an out of state relative or close friend act as a contact person for everyone in the family in the event you get separated and can’t contact each other locally.

Make sure the needs of elderly friends and family will be taken care of. If necessary, register family members with special medical needs at the local shelter ahead of time. Don’t forget about the needs of your pets as well.

Cash

Make sure you have plenty of cold, hard cash on hand. Most likely the power will be down, which means many stores, gas stations, etc. won’t be taking debit or credit cards.

Food and Water

The American Red Cross suggests you keep at least three days’ worth of water and nonperishable food on hand. After my experience with Katrina in Mississippi I would err on the side of caution and suggest increasing your supply of food and water to at least a week. Nonperishable food will keep for some time, so if you don’t need it immediately it will get used eventually.

Supplies

Make sure you have flashlights, batteries, and a portable radio, preferably battery or wind up (self-powered). If you take medications, make sure you have at least a week’s worth on hand. Keep a well-stocked first aid kit on hand.

Gas up your car and fill up any spare gas containers you have. If you have a portable generator make sure you are familiar with its safe operation.

Prepare the Exterior

Bring inside anything that can be picked up by the wind. This includes lawn furniture, decorations, planters, and the like. If you have shade awnings and don’t want to see them turned into sails, fold them down securely or put them away as well.

photo credit: stockroomcontrol via photopin cc

If you pay attention to the veterans of hurricanes, you’ll notice they have pre-cut and labeled plywood pieces ready for quick window covering. Use ¾ inch exterior grade plywood, not OSB, at a minimum. It’s amazing what a projectile pushed by 100 mph winds can do to a house.

Powered Necessities

Make sure that anything that can hold a charge is fully powered. The first thing that comes to mind is likely your cell phone. But also make sure other devices are charged as well. This includes things you might not think of as important, such as a power drill or electric razor. Keep in mind that you can’t be over prepared.

Also important—turn your refrigerator and freezer down to the coldest settings and avoid opening them unless absolutely necessary to ensure that your food will last longer if the power does go out. And pack them full if possible. An empty freezer warms faster than one full of frozen items. If you have room, freeze water containers.

Power Down

Make sure you unplug your small appliances, computers, and other electronics. Turn off propane tanks. If you are evacuating and think your house faces a good chance of suffering damage, turn off the water and natural gas at your own discretion.

Stay Inside

If you are going to ride out the storm, stay inside. If the storm suddenly lets up and everything looks calm, don’t venture out. You are likely in the eye of the storm, and the dangerous winds will be returning soon. Even if you are not taking a direct hit from the storm, keep in mind that dangerous winds along with lightning and tornados can be present anywhere in the storm.