Two More Out There
I taught my first concealed handgun license (CHL) class on Sunday. My two students did a great job throughout the class, including the range portion. They've started the application process; I hope to hear they've gotten their CHLs in the mail in the coming days.
Two recent stories from the Houston area, such as this one and this one, highlight the need for all of us to stay vigilant, even if we live in the relative safety of the suburbs. Crime does happen here in the 'burbs.
More MFer stories
I outlined back on 22 November how the MF Global debacle could affect our agricultural sector, and today's story along those lines reiterates that. Agriculture is a capital intensive business, and big players in that sector - including many family farmers - require access to tremendous amounts of it and a secure, predictable financial market in which to keep their capital and invest it. Fewer farmers able to plant as much food for us to eat = less food for us to eat at harvest time.
Pay attention, friends. While this may not result in a food crisis, it does highlight how tenuous the system can be. It also demonstrates to the MRE and camo crowd that if you are serious about being a prepper, you have to study everything - including the markets.
Railway Strike Averted - For Now
Speaking of markets, our nation narrowly avoided a massive railway strike. As you may know, railroads carry 43% of all freight in the U.S., including a third of our exports and 70% of our coal. Some believe a strike would have cost the U.S. economy, during this holiday shopping season, a whopping $2B a day.
I'm not anti-union, as I think people should feel free and collectively bargain if they so choose, provided the rights of other workers who don't wish to do are not affected. It's clear in this case the union used the upcoming holiday season as leverage to gain an advantage in the negotiation. It's also clear such a strike would have had a devastating effect on our ability to obtain coal for heating and other basic necessities.
The crisis you prepare for may not be the one you face. If you're prepared for a hurricane but end up using your supplies during a national railway crisis where there's a shortage of food at the grocery store, then your prep efforts were not in vain.
Survival Garden Update
I mentioned a while back I was testing some non-organic and organic gardening techniques. I will tell you the non-organic garden is winning by a long shot.
In the preparedness community, many believe the only type of seeds you should use are of the heirloom variety. I will tell you right now that in an emergency situation, if you can grow edible foods using hybrid seeds instead, those same people will use them. They'd be crazy not to.
Learn as much as you can about gardening, both organic techniques as well as conventional techniques. Don't shun one for the other. Learn about them both so you can maximize your yield long term.