Day 137: 2020 Pandemic. The White House, Locked Off From The People

The White House is supposed to be our house. The people’s.

Yet now it is surrounded by barricades and walls. And the occupant blames the people and takes no responsibility.

Over one thousand Americans are dying every day and our president is golfing. There STILL is no Federal plan for anything. From testing, to PPE, to re-opening. The president has completely abdicated a national disaster to fifty different states as if the pandemic cares about states’ borders. Then he undermines governors on twitter with outright hostile tweets if he doesn’t like a governor’s policy.

For months people would attack my posts by saying it was New York City’s problems, usually with one of the president’s profanities such as calling it a shithole. Then it was democratic governors and nursing homes. Now?  Crickets.

To say our current states of affairs was unnecessary is understating it. We blew it. We blew it. And we’re still blowing it. Science doesn’t matter. All that matters is the ego of a man who has never admitted he was wrong about anything in life. Now over 150,000 Americans have paid with their lives.

Yes, there would have been deaths. But if we’d followed the plan that was in place; and had kept the task force designed to deal with this both at the source and here in the states in place, the deaths would have been a fraction of what they are. This is outright negligent homicide. Yet the man who is responsible is tweeting “law and order” as if he has ever considered the law anything more than a nuisance to be gotten around his entire life. The irony is off the scale.

We are in hurricane season. It’s warmer than it’s ever been and getting warmer. Tens of millions are out of work because of this completely botched response to COVID-19.

Once more I remind you that we are on our own. We are not just on our own, we now have a misguided policy of using Federal law enforcement to “pre-emptively” police our cities. The very phrase indicates what’s going on is illegal. You cannot pre-emptively detain someone off the street, yet that is exactly what is happening.

We have entered a very dark zone.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 136: 2020 Pandemic. FEAR CITY

Is currently the #1 show on Netflix. For a variety of reasons. The mafia has always fascinated Americans for some reason. Often idolized in entertainment media, the reality is much different. The series is about the late 1970s in New York City, where, according to the documentary, the mafia ruled and then the FBI’s ability to use RICO to take it apart.

I grew up in the city during those years. My father worked for the Sanitation Dept of the city. They were responsible for all garbage collection from citizens and snow removal. Garbage collection from businesses was privatized and as they say on the Sopranos: “Garbage is our bread and butter.”

I remember a little place on the corner of our block in the Bronx where a couple of old Italian guys would sit outside playing cards, weather permitting, and they made book out back.

I set my Will Kane books in the city starting in 1977. The summer of the Blackout. And Son of Sam. Who shot a girl I went to grade school with. She did survive. It was a pivotal year in many ways. Rupert Murdoch made his first inroads into the States by buying the NY Post, which I used to deliver as a boy. The venerable newspaper founded by Alexander Hamilton. All that history plays into the Will Kane’s stories.

I like writing about a time when there were no cell phones, no laptops, no google searches, no CCTV to bail you out in your plot. When you were out, the only way to call was to literally drop a dime. My wife told me that we have a new generation that wouldn’t know how to operate a rotary phone. Ah, the good old days, when the mafia ruled the city.

The Green Beret Series.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 132: 2020 Pandemic. 20 Items Every Hiker Should Have In Your Day Pack. P.S. It also . . .

Gives you a basic Grab-n-Go bag.

Whether it’s just a short jaunt in the woods or a longer day-hike, these are things everyone should carry in their day pack. Over-confidence is the bane of many a day-tripper’s journey. The pack should be tailored to your locale. Try to get items that have multiple uses, rather than just one.

Pack choice is personal. I have learned when you go cheap, you get cheap. After researching and using others, I settled on an Osprey Stratos 24. The nice part is it pushes away from your back and has mesh to help avoid that sweat soaking. Note I don’t have stuff hanging all over the outside. It comes with a rain cover. 

I’ve played with this a while in a variety of situations and this is what I ended up with. I’ve got the free slideshow with images of the items mentioned and links later on, but here’s the list.

  1. The equivalent of 4 full 500ml water bottles. More if in hot weather.
  2. Water Purification. Lifestraw or a bottle of purification tablets.
  3. Fire is your friend in a survival situation. I know we’d all like to use that bow and stick, but for emergencies, a lighter is much easier. A plasma lighter is also a flashlight and rechargeable. Stormproof matches in a waterproof container.
  4. Power. Since I list a rechargeable lighter, power becomes an issue. I’ve become a fan of solar, which allows a renewable power source from nature. A small solar power bank is light and in my day pack. You can hang it on the outside of your pack to charge. It will charge your phone and your lighter/flashlight. PS: Don’t forget the cables for phone and lighter!
  5. Food. I carry several power bars. Other, more varied edibles, depending on the walk. This is personal, but have something to eat.
  6. I have an emergency sleeping bag in my day pack and in all our cars. It’s inexpensive, light and small.
  7. 550/parachute cord. Useful in many, many ways.
  8. Leatherman multitool. It gets used every day and I carry it in a sheath on my belt
  9. Besides the light on the plasma lighter, I carry a headlamp. In case you misjudged your hike or there is a delay, a headlamp can help you get back to the trail head after dark.
  10. First Aid Kit. There are plenty of prepared ones you can buy. I tend to personalize and add things, but at least have a basic one.
  11. I recommend adding a quick-clot bandage to your day pack with a splint, and an Israeli combat bandage. I can verify the Quik-Clot works. I carry a Quik Clot bandage in my day pack, on my bike and in our cars.
  12. Hat appropriate for time of year and environment. A wool watch cap for colder environs— most heat escapes through the head. A boonie hat for warmer— keep the sun off, protects your head. I always carry an extra pair of dry socks in a ziplock bag. Pants and long sleeve shirts of a material that dries quickly.
  13. Gloves. Not just for weather but to protect your hands. In the field and on deployments, I always wore gloves.
  14. A survival knife with sharpener. This knife also has a whistle.
  15. A Signal mirror.
  16. You can’t count on the GPS on your phone. Have a physical map of the area you will be hiking in. If you haven’t bought one, download the contour map for your area for free, then print it out, or order the map sheets. I have a separate slideshare about free downloadable maps, how to read them and other pertinent information.
  17. I carry an over-sized waterproof rain jacket in my day pack. It packs very tightly. Also, make sure you have a waterproof cover for your pack (one should come with it).
  18. Sun screen and bug juice can keep an enjoyable hike from turning into a miserable trek.
  19. I usually have my wallet on a day hike, but I also carry $20 in cash a Ziplock bag. I also put biowipes in there just in case.
  20. I carry a SpotX 2 Way Satellite messenging system. I’ve gone many places where there is no cell phone coverage. There are places all over the country, including in the Smoky Mountains, with no cell coverage. I view this as a potentially life-saving investment. Also peace of mind as my family can get hold of me any time and I can update them on my progress.

The contents of my day pack from top left Knife with whistle/sharpener; canteen; rain jacket; (Ziplok extra batteries for headlamp, water purifying tablets, waterproof match cases, small roll duct tape, magnesium fire starter, 550 cord); dog leash; solar battery pack, cables, (Ziplok money, medical tape, biowipes, sun screen); Ziplok (gloves and watch cap); Ziplok (extra socks); bug juice; SpotX with case; plasma ligher/flashlight; headlamp; survival bag; fire starter; survival straw; Quikclot bandage; Ultralight Waterproof Medical Kit 9, stuff with extra stuff; splint.

The compass and mirror are tied off in the front left pocket of the day pack. I carry several power bars in the outside right mesh pocket. I carry a water bottle in the outside left mesh pocket in addition to the canteen inside. Israeli bandage in First Aid kit. My cell phone is in my thigh pocket of my pants. My Leatherman and flashlight on my belt. I clip my Jeep key off to the ring on my pants (always clip you car key somewhere; do not leave loose in your pocket). Hiking boots is personal. I’ve found REI to be very useful in choosing gear. I’ve been a member since before they had physical stores. I cover useful APPs in another slideshow, but I have several good locator ones. Also map apps. I’ve recently begun using the GAIA map App and find it to be the most complete. If you are going out of cell phone range have your map tiles preloaded.

I hope you find this useful. Certain environments will, of course, require you to adjust what you carry. I’m a big fan of checklists, because it sucks to be a couple of miles from the trail head and realize you forgot something. Also, as an added benefit, you now have a basic Grab-n-Go Bag!

Here is the free slideshow that has links to most of the gear.

Day 130: 2020 Pandemic. A Modest Proposal On Protesting. Stop.

We are in a lose-lose-lose situation. If you remember War Games, the movie from 1983, in the end the computer decides the only way to win the nuclear escalation is to not play at all. That’s pretty much our situation now.

I’m not saying give in. Or surrender. We have to think strategically. I see many people lament those who only watch Fox News, but you’re just as wrong if you don’t watch Fox News daily to see what’s going on. Remember, Trump takes his cues from Fox.

I’m surprised that no one’s reported on what happened the night things got tense with Iran. After Iran launched missiles and hit our bases? We watched Fox. Why? Because we knew Trump was. While everyone was wondering what he would do and debating counter-strikes, Tucker Carlson was urging restraint. And then he brought on a guest we never saw before and never saw again. She was labeled a Middle East Expert or something and dressed oddly for such an expert. Personally, I believe she was an actress hired for this role and given a script. Because she went on this rant about how Pelosi and Schumer wanted war with Iran so badly; it was their only goal. That they wanted Trump to go to war. Yada, Yada. Just minutes after that segment aired, Trump stood down the counterstrikes.

Coincidence? Trump can be played. Read Mary Trump’s book and understand he reacts. He rarely acts. A person with his personality disorder can be played in ways normal people wouldn’t understand.

We have an obligation to watch Fox as intelligence gathering. And Fox is running nonstop Law and Order and the democrats/liberal/commie/antifa/socialists etcetera want to destroy law and order, kill everyone, rape their wives, burn their houses, and salt the ground they live on. Real Conan the Barbarian stuff.

Fox supplements these rants with selected clips. We already know they photoshopped scenes from Seattle when that cluster was going on. We’ll have plenty of photoshopping and carefully edited clips showing cities on fire and out of control rioters.

Trump thrives on conflict. He flat out has said that all his life. Read his own books. What he wants now is conflict on a national level. He wants chaos. Pushback. What if we gave him none?

Of course, it will be invented. There will be pay for play rioters. There will be provocations by Trump’s sycophants.

But protesting now is a zero sum game. Things aren’t going to change and can only get worse. Portland is a prelude and they’ve already publicly announced that program will be expanded to other cities. You can bet that AG Barr has laid out his trap for protestors already.

People are talking options that will only escalate. Will local and state LEO stand against Federal? Doubtful. Such a confrontation is fraught with danger. If governors call up the Guard, Trump will nationalize the Guard. And will the Guard even pushback against Federal forces? Ultimately what Trump is seeking is a reason to declare an emergency (aka the invasion from the south that never happened) and postpone and then keep postponing the election. Think of poor Justice Ginsberg trying to hang on? He would dearly love to declare martial law. He’s indicated a great willingness to bring in active duty military and already did it in Washington DC. They will do it again. Let’s not give him that.

I know it will feel like surrendering. No. Wait for 3 November. When he tries whatever he tries, we go V is for Vendetta.

Also, let’s accept we’re in the midst of a pandemic. We don’t need more good people getting sick. The body count is going to be the biggest protest available. Let’s make sure we get that number right while Trump tries to juke the stats. Let’s post of those we love who have suffered and/or died. Let’s let him continue to hang himself as he has ALWAYS done in every job he’s had. He’s self-destructive. Let him destruct.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 129: 2020 Pandemic. The Pandemic Is Surging. What Do Events in Portland Portend?

It didn’t need to happen. Really. Logic and science said it would; but both were ignored. So states re-opened, after never really shutting down and now tens, if not hundreds, of thousands will die.

The president never understood this issue, never cared about it except how it might hurt his reelection and now, quite frankly, it’s over for him. Like anything to do with Russia (like bounties) he simply doesn’t want to hear about it. COVID-19 will miraculously go away. We still have a governor in Georgia who is suing Atlanta to prevent a mandate to wear masks. Let that utter criminal stupidity sink it. Of course, he stole the election so crimes pile on top of themselves.

As far as Portland. At first I was very concerned about the reports coming out of un-named, unbadged police picking people up. We have a big problem with police. People misinterpret Unfund the Police. They means shift some of the money away from police to other agencies that would relieve the police of missions that shouldn’t be there’s to begin with. Police are no marriage counselors. They aren’t trained in a lot of the things they’re called upon to do. We need people trained in those areas to work with the police. Better for everyone.

The more I dig into the Portland thing, it is still disturbing but perhaps not drastic.

First, police have been ignoring the First Amendment A LOT lately. What happened in Lafayette Square so Trump could get his photo op was illegal. The police are instigating a lot of violence against relatively peaceful protestors. Certainly there are many who go too far. More so, there are criminals who use protests to carry out looting and other illegal activity and its hard to sort it out.

Second. Portland could be a trial balloon for the Republican Party to build up intimidation leading to the November election. From Trump on done they have publicly and privately been doing everything they can to suppress the bolt. They’ve admitted it. The less people vote, the better for them. The new Postmaster General is grinding down USPS and Republicans (even though the hypocrites vote by mail) are working hard to block mail in ballots.

Third, however, I don’t think it is a big scheme plan. People need to stop thinking Trump plays three dimensional chess. He’s cunning. He’s a criminal. He’s excellent at blackmail and intimidation (read Republican Senators). But he doesn’t plan. If he did, he wouldn’t have gone bankrupt multiple times. He wouldn’t be running the worst campaign ever. He can’t help himself. As he says, he relies on his instincts and his gut and they are STUPID. He’s killing hundreds of thousands of use because of that, but let’s not give him credit he doesn’t deserve. This is an over-zealous non-ratified DHS acting secretary. We’ve got whackos in a number of high positions starting with Trump, Barr, Pompeo, DeVoss and others but they couldn’t plan anything in concert. They’re all after their own interests.

I take great faith from the turnouts in Wisconsin for the Supreme Court and in other Democratic primaries that have broken records. People are not staying home in November. They will not tolerate this insanity any longer.

I highly recommend reading Mary Trump’s book, Too Much and Never Enough. Many people don’t understand that Trump is severely physiologically impaired. He is not in reality. That doesn’t excuse anything he does, but we absolutely do need to understand it.

Here’s what worries me immediately about Portland. It’s a liberal city in a very otherwise red state. Oregon is home to many militias. I foresee a possibility of a militia group dressing up like DHS or CBP, slapping a velrco POLICE thing on their body armor (I get a half dozen catalogues a month where you can buy all that, including badges) and driving around in SUVs and vans and reeking havoc. Or, someone like me, walking along and having something like that pull up next to me and guys jumping out trying to grab me? There’s a good chance of blood in the streets, because they aren’t taking me. That’s not a boast. I trained SWAT times while in SF. I know the law and frankly I do not trust a lot of these people. I also don’t understand the extreme militarization of our police. I think it emboldens them to be more aggressive than they normally would be. BTW, Barr, pepper balls are chemical. Duh, Too many people have had an eye taken out or worse injuries from rubber bullets. When I heard that old man’s head hit the concrete in Buffalo– you could even see the cops in line pause and look. That was completely out of line.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 128: 2020 Pandemic. Updated Information on Water, Food, Heat Wave and the Acronym SURVIVAL

I’ve been updating my free slideshows on various survival and life preparedness information. The latest are in the subject and gathered on one page HERE.

BTW: My #1 Amazon bestseller in science fiction, Atlantis if free today through 19 July HERE. It’s the first time it’s been free in a couple of years.

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 124: 2020 Pandemic. Things People Wished They Had Before A Disaster

I’ve done a lot of research on both natural and man-made disasters. Also on survival. Certain things kept coming up in after-action reports that people wish they’d done before the disaster.

I’ve put together a free slideshow on some of them.

We’re in a slow rolling apocalypse right now and perhaps we will come out all right, but there aren’t many positive signs. I’ll be posting more on various longer term survival topics soon. I’ve been updating the over 30 free survival slideshows: Free Slideshows

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 123: 2020 Pandemic. Record Number of Pandemic Cases in Florida. Disney World Opens.

That sums up the apocalypse that is the United States.

Betsy DeVos, Sec of Education, summed up this administration’s approach to the pandemic this morning by insisting schools re-open but when asked if there is a plan, she said schools were on their own to figure out how to do that. And how to support it. She offered no plan, no federal support. We have no federal plan for any aspect of this pandemic, here, almost midway into July. It’s stunning as we record numbers of infections and will soon see record numbers of deaths.

We are short PPE. Still. We are short testing. Still. We are short meds. Still. But Jared Kushner did a helluva of a job, didn’t he?

One-third of rents/mortgages were not paid for July. One-third. Let that sink in.

I’ve gone back to basics in terms of preparation. I’m heading out this coming week to cache extra supplies at our BOHS (bug out hide site). I’m re-inventorying gear and equipment. Upping my solar battery capability.

A negative sign, but are other people noticing that soups and other long term food stuffs are in shorter supply in their groceries? The good news for those who see what’s happening is that, unlike when the pandemic first started, you can resupply a number of things. A small example: the Mountain House Classic Bucket is once more available. It’s made by the same company that made what we called LRRPs in Special Forces. You just add hot water to the pouch, stir, and eat. Yummy.

I remember field testing MREs back in the day. We went to field in the First Cav Division for three weeks to eat. And do other stuff. But eat. We weren’t thrilled with MREs. I actually missed the old C-rats. I was one of the weirdos who liked the ham-n-eggs in the can. And the small tins of cheese with the crackers? Packing your ruck by tearing the C-rats apart and putting them in socks so they wouldn’t rattle in your ruck? We used to tear even the MREs and LRRPs down to get rid of extra weight like that extra plastic spoon. You only need one damn spoon.

We’re in a slow rolling apocalypse right now and perhaps we will come out all right, but there aren’t many positive signs. I’ll be posting more on various longer term survival topics soon. I’ve been updating the over 30 free survival slideshows: Free Slideshows

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 121: 2020 Pandemic. It’s Bad. But It Can Get Worse. Are You Prepared?

2020 needs a do-over. But that’s not going to happen. A lot of people are in denial right now but here is reality: Nothing is different than when things shut down. There is no vaccine. COVID-19 is still viral and kills and damages people. Permanently. Yet we’re talking about opening schools? If so, why did we even shut them down in the first place?

There hasn’t been a second wave because we’re still riding the crest up the first wave. But there may be a different first wave. Of something worse. We have to realize that viruses mutate. In fact, we’re trying to make a strain of COVID-19 for a vaccine—one that’s not lethal. But what if it develops on its own in the other direction? There’s troubling stories popping up in places. And we now know that governments, including our own, are working hard to suppress the truth.

For those of you who, you know, believe in science, this is a time when, if you haven’t already, to upgrade your preparedness.

This outbreak in Kazakhstan has already killed 1,700. That has been reported. One thing to remember is that many people have died and not been reported. Many people in the States have died of COVID-19, but because they died at home, they haven’t been listed on the official count. Here’s a link to the article in the image above.

I think it’s a smart move to become more prepared for the possibility of things getting a bit worse.

Here are three books I recommend. Yes, one is mine, but honestly, it’s the best out there on preparation. It’s also good for survival, but I also have the SAS manual as it has more images of plants and good information. The third book is one full of what would be needed in a worse case scenario.

BTW. I’m working on new slideshares about solar power and also scavenging. I’ll announce once those are live. But every day I’m updating a survival slideshare and reposting them. They’re free to peruse or download. Also, I’ve started a small store, basically just links, to survival gear I’ve purchased and use. I’ve done a lot of research and also spend time out there in nature using this gear and testing it.

Over 30 free survival slideshows are on this page, along with information on writing and various interesting topics. Free Slideshows

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.

Day 119: 2020 Pandemic. How To Prepare For And Deal With One of the Deadliest Natural Disasters.

Wildfires can be devastating. They’ve wiped out entire communities. They can occur in many different places. They’re fast, often over-running those who wait too long to flee. They push a wall of heat far ahead of the flames that is deadly.

How do you prepare for and deal with it?

Over 30 free survival slideshows are on this page, along with information on writing and various interesting topics. Free Slideshows

The Green Beret Pocket-Sized Survival Guide (same as above, minus the preparation part in order to be smaller in print)

The Green Beret Preparation and Survival Guide. Also in Kindle Unlimited.