Tag Archives: Situational Awareness

Survival Sunday – 7.26.2015

In this weeks edition of Survival Sunday: Enhancing Situational Awareness, Dacha Farms, Powerless Laundry, What Happens After TEOTWAWKI, Firearms Production, Pros & Cons Of Being Suburban Prepper, Are You Living An Outsourced Life? plus 4 More.

Survival Sunday

This week has been fairly routine for me. I am pleased to have my family back with me under the same roof. Their absence over the last two weeks got me thinking about how things would be if we were to be separated when a disaster hit. Honestly, the thought is terrifying to me but it is a reality that should be contemplated. If that were the case, I just hope that I am the one in hardship and not them.

I don’t have any significant accomplishments to report this week in terms of being better prepared for the unexpected. I wish this were not the case but the reality is that whether it is due to time, finances, lack of opportunity, or even something that my wife and I don’t agree on, not every week will result in being more prepared than the previous week.

I almost forgot, I saw the Minions movie with my wife and sons. I love those guys!


Here’s what I managed to find this week:

5 Ways To Enhance Your Situational Awareness – The term “situational awareness” is a buzzword in the preparedness arena and as such, tends to be written off sometimes. Regardless, a tenet to surviving is the ability to tune in to what is happening around you.

How The “Dacha Farms” Made Russia Self-Sufficient – What would the United States be like if the majority of our food was grown within our own borders? These farms in Russia have the capacity to provide greater than half of the food in the country, an impressive feat. Come to think of it, maybe the better question to ask would be something along the lines of, what would it look like if the food grown in the United States was consumed by the people in the United States?

Which Powerless Laundry System Is Best? – Deployed to Iraq three separate times, I have a little experience with powerless laundry. This article covers the topic fairly well. I will say this much, if you are doing laundry by hand you are going to have clothing that looks dirtier than what you are used to. It will just be your new reality.

What Happens After The End Of TEOTWAWKI? – What would we do if the things fell apart and we were forced to rebuild the country from the ground up? There are many who speculate that, at the rate we are going, the United States may find out sooner instead of later.

Firearms Production Has More Than Doubled Since Obama Took Office – This is not a surprise to me at all but it does say something about how people are feeling about the current climate of America.

The Pros & Cons Of Being A Suburban Prepper – There are several key points that demand consideration in this article. Even if you don’t live in a suburban or urban area, it is worth contemplating what types of situations would keep you where you are and what might be the decision point to bug out.

Are You Living An Outsourced Life? – When I read this, I found myself thinking back to my own life and I was surprised at how much has changed in just the last three decades that I have been alive.

Is there a good solution for the ever-growing national debt in America? Former U.S. Senator from the State of Oklahoma discusses the debt and a potential plan of action (which I happen to like) in a USA Today OpEd titled, ‘Tom Coburn: A deficit of debt discussion‘.

More madness in the world:

Seattle’s Nanny State Is “Deputizing Trashmen As Secret Police” To Snoop Through Wastebins – It seems as though the Emerald City has taken it upon itself to ensure that anything that can be composted, is. This is from City of Seattle Ordinances #121372, 124313, & 124582 along with Director’s Rule SW-402.1. F.Y.I. Seattle…unless you’re growing a giant garden, compostable items are going to break down in a compost pile or the landfill just the same.

Karl Rove: Only Way To Stop The Violence Is To Repeal Second Amendment – Excuse me? ‘Cause there are not other countries who actually did remove this right from it’s citizens and still have mass murders, right?

Former U.S. General Calls For Rounding Up & Interning “Radicalized” & “Disloyal” Americans – General (Ret.) Wesley Clark thinks it might be a good idea to put people in internment camps like it is World War II. Just be careful what you say around this guy!

That’s a wrap for me this week. As always, I hope that you all have had a great week and keep getting ready for tough times. It seems like we get closer every day to something unfortunate coming along.

If you found something that you would like to share with the group or have any questions, don’t hesitate to email me at tom@thepreparedninja.com.

Come back next week for another edition of Survival Sunday.

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Principles of Personal Defense

I have been familiar with one of the war hero’s of our nation, Colonel Jeff Cooper for a number of years now. He is renowned in the firearms community for establishing the Gunsite Training Institute where he provided training on rifle and shotgun as well as pistol training in Cooper’s modern technique which is identified in part by the use of two hands to shoot accompanied by the use of the weaver stance. In addition to a proud military history and phenomenal training academy, Jeff Cooper had a writing career that extended across seven decades of his life. While he wrote for several magazines and newsletters throughout his life, Cooper also wrote many books, one of which is titled, Principles of Personal Defense which serves as an awesome primer on situational awareness and dealing with the reality of having to defend oneself in the face of attack.

What I find particularly great about Principles of Personal Defense is that it is written from the perspective that attackers should not be allowed to dictate the circumstances in which we live. Colonel Cooper mentions in his introduction that only a small percentage of people are sociopaths that will commit crimes and go on to mention that,

Violent crime is feasible only if its victims are cowards. A victim who fights back makes the whole business impractical. It is true that a victim who fights back may suffer for it, but one who does not almost certainly will suffer for it. And, suffer or not, the one who fights back retains his dignity and his self-respect. Any study of the atrocity list of recent years-Starkweather, Speck,Manson, Richard Hickok and Cary Smith, et al-shows immediately that the victims, by their appalling ineptitude and timidity, virtually assisted in their own murders. (“Don’t make them mad, Martha, so they won’t hurt us.”)

Obviously the list of criminals from “recent years” is not so recent as this quote is taken from the first edition written in 1989 but the principle is a sound one. The idea of personal defense in this booklet is not limited to one particular setting but encompasses crimes at home and on the street which provokes additional thought as well. Cooper goes on to outline the seven principles of personal defense which are:

  1. Alertness – Know what is going on around you. This is covered with two basic rules. The first is know what is behind you and the second is pay particular attention to anything out of place.
  2. Decisiveness – When faced with a life threatening situation you must make the appropriate decision on how to react immediately.
  3. Aggressiveness – “The best personal defense is an explosive counterattack.” Being on the defense doesn’t allow one to be on the offense but a violent defense can completely stop an offensive attack.
  4. Speed – “The perfect defense is a counterattack that succeeds before the assailant discovers that he has bitten off more than he can chew.” Speed is key to surviving an attack by an assailant.
  5. Coolness – Keep your cool. Failure to keep it together can result in an inability to mount an effective defense.
  6. Ruthlessness – “Anyone who willfully and maliciously attacks another without sufficient cause deserves no consideration.” Operate within the confines of the law but offer no relief to the enemy. Given a chance to remove the threat, do so.
  7. Surprise – Do what your attacker does not expect you to do. By catching the attacker off guard, you can gain the advantage.
This booklet is not a long read at all and I would encourage everyone to read it. Even if you do not have an interest in firearms, the book can teach the reader a great amount about situational awareness and dealing with an attacker or the potential of facing an attack.

In addition to the previously mentioned works, COL Cooper is deeply engrained in many other principles of firearms training which include the four rules of firearm safety and firearm carry conditions. If you have ever heard of the scout rifle concept before then you have heard of another one of the works that COL Cooper is well-known for refining.

What do you think is the most important principle of personal defense? Leave your remarks in the comments section.

Do you have a personal defense story that you would be willing to share? If so, please fill out the contact form on The Prepared Ninja homepage and let us know about it.

Disclaimer – Consult all local laws and regulations regarding use of force and personal defense. The author of this blog post is not an attorney or not otherwise qualified to offer legal advise or counsel on any subject. The information provided here is strictly for the purpose of provoking thought on the subject matter.

Do You Prep For All Scenarios?

Do you prep for what may happen today, tomorrow, or anytime? Are your preparations for only one possibility, a slew of minor disasters, or global catastrophe of any and all proportions? Are there key things you look for or events that trigger a specific response from you as a prepper? These are all considerations that should be kept in mind that will assist preppers in staying ahead of the sheeple.

One specific example of a key event that should trigger a reaction from a prepper is a cost increase in a certain food. Last year saw increases occur in a myriad of foods but sharp spikes of up to 40% occurred in the cost of peanut butter as a result of blighted crops and fewer crops being planted than what would meet the demand. This year corn crops in many parts of the country have seen drastically reduced outputs as a result of water shortages and heat waves. What does this mean for the prepper? Get your corn now! My wife recently found canned corn on sale at our local grocery store at the price of three cans for $1.00. Three or four months from now I would not be surprised to see a 15 ounce can of corn selling for somewhere north of the $1.50 price point.

There are many aspects of prepping that come to mind when I think of buying early to save later. In 2003 I purchased a Ruger 10/22 for less than $150. If I were to purchase the same firearm this year it would cost well over $200, an increase of over 33% in less than a decade. The same year that I bought my Ruger rifle I also purchased a Mossberg 12 Gauge shotgun for $189 that if I were to go out and buy it at my local sporting goods store today, it would run just under $300. That’s an increase in price of over 50% in less than 10 years. It seems like there is a trend here or something! We would see the trend continue if we looked at the cost of the ammunition for these same firearms.

Fuel prices are going up. The cost of a post-secondary education is more than a starter home. A used car that doesn’t even run can cost more than a brand-new Ford Mustang was in 1966. I can go on but this is starting to become depressing. My point is that prices for many items are going up. They have for years and they will continue to do so. But some of these costs can be avoided, at least temporarily. Avoiding these costs even only on the short-term can be a significant relief at a time when so many costs are rising and most paychecks are stagnant. That brings us to the other side of the coin. How many people are increasing their incomes right now? I will not even address that here today.

So how are these costs avoided or delayed? That is a good question. A question that I do not have a perfect answer to, nor do I know anyone who does. However, I do know that over the last year I saved over 50% on the cost of my family’s peanut butter costs and this coming year I will probably save about 60-80% on the cost of the corn that my family will eat just because I paid attention to what was happening. In the military we called this situational awareness or being aware of what was going on around us. When I saw that peanut butter was going to increase significantly we went to the store and stocked up on enough peanut butter to get us through 18-24 months. It is not like peanut butter is going to go bad over night. When I saw that corn crops were not doing well I knew that costs would be going up and it was time to stock up. When the opportunity presented itself to buy cans of corn at $0.33 each we jumped on it. Once again, canned corn is good for about two years or more so it is not a bad buy. The other thing to keep in mind is that with corn crop production being so low it will not just be corn itself that will increase in cost but corn containing products as well. If you regularly use products such as corn meal or corn bread mix there may be no time like the present to get a good supply of those items too.

Looking towards the future, there are some key indicators that could be causes for concern. One such reason for concern would be the re-election of the sitting POTUS (President of the United States). Were President Obama to get re-elected it is likely that some of the “real” agenda would come to light. Much of my concern is that some of the true agenda contains strict gun controls measures and new laws that would make certain types of ammunition illegal as well as the number of rounds that can be purchased at one time and where you can buy those same rounds. For example, I can see hollow-point ammunition being outlawed as well as purchasing more than 100 rounds at one time and online ammunition sales being made illegal. Is this possible? Yes. Is it probable? Who knows. The point here is that by being aware of how certain events impact the future, whether it is a permanent or temporary impact, you can avoid higher costs, difficulties, shortages, or even government bans. Keep both eyes open and think toward the future.