Friday, 5 January 2018

An Unpopular Topic





Hi folks

I have been given a fair bit of flack on forums and other frugality/simple living sites about my views on what-I-call inevitable future world events.

As a keen history buff I see history repeating itself over and over, albeit in different eras and contexts, but still repeating nonetheless. I also see highly civilised societies copping the brunt of these unsavoury repetitions in human behaviour.

Being ready for what I firmly believe to be some 'tough' times around the corner is part of our plan and awareness here at our place. Not only are we financially sorting our future, we are also beginning to prepare for some form of international conflict and all the stern realities that this brings.

OK, so I can see eyes rolling and readers clicking away from this post right about now, however, being reasonable and realistic means being prudent about inevitable maverick-style human behaviour at a global scale.  No, I am not a classic prepper with a fortress, dug-out and artillery, but we are quietly starting to prepare for history to repeat itself.  I refuse to be caught on the hop.


Who can deny the deliciousness of a baked potato?

Instead of putting our head in the sand and squealing about "negativity" and "scaremongering", there are much better ways to channel our emotional responses to the subject. Let me be quite clear about that subject - I am talking about another world conflict in whatever form it takes.

Would it be so hard to quietly, discretely and prudently do the following list?

  •   Stockpile some fresh water
  •   Stockpile some canned food
  •   Stockpile some dry goods
  •   Organise some alternate forms of heating and lighting
  •   Organise some alternate form of cooking
  •   Buy a bicycle
  •   Start growing some basic fresh salads, herbs and vegetables
  •   Expand a first aid kit
  •   Have some actual cash put aside
  •   Get to know neighbours and community a little better (we'll need each other)

I'm not talking about going nuts - just simply being prudent and more prepared.  Is that so offensive?

I trow not.


Take care and stay nice folks.

Mr HM (Phil)

50 comments:

  1. No you are not offensive, I agree with you, nothing wrong with being prepared, things are going to get tough for many of us, I have seen this coming for a while.

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  2. I sense this too Phil. History has always repeated itself, it would be naive and arrogant of our generation to think we are immune. There are many reasons why we are trying to reduce our mortgage, but one of them is preparedness for WHEN the bubble bursts, because historically it always does.

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  3. They are all sensible preparations for more ordinary happenings anyway, things like Power cuts, bad weather, burst water main, car breakdown etc everyone would benefit by helping themselves. And as for BIG things who knows?

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    1. That is true too - we've lived through a couple of weeks with no power or amenities due to storms, yes.

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  4. The new skills I have been teaching myself over the last few years are not for nothing! Making bread, making soap, canning, preserving, gardening and all that goes with that. Going back towards a simpler, more sustainable life gives us life skills that by its own definition makes us more prepared for any eventuality. That is not a bad thing in my opinion. Regards Shona

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    1. Yes Shona. I smile at all these 'clever' folk who are not as well rounded. In a crisis, guess who will be clever then!

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  5. No Phil there is nothing offensive about that at all, Red Cross amongst many organisations recommend the same as you have just for everyday emergencies.

    I too have copped grief on other forums for telling the absolute truth that things happen and we need to prepare for them.

    Look at for instance just financial crisis's, hiccups or whatever you want to call them that happen on average over history 1 every ten years, normal weather cycles of floods, cyclones and the everyday threat of loosing one's job as no job is secure anymore.

    It is wise advice that we all need to take note of and do something about.

    Sewingcreations15.

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    1. Hmmm, every tens years. Well, we are due then hey?!

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  6. I happen to think you are right Phil. We need to be preparing now for what is to come. We are not living in good times, so it is definitely a good idea to stockpile at least some of the basics.

    I just discussed this with hubby and we aren't too bad off here. We have rain water, we have solar, we know alternative cooking methods, we grow our own herbs and vegetables, we keep a large first aid kit, we have heating, but cooling would be a problem, we have bikes, canned and dry foods, cash on hand would be an advantage for sure.

    Our son jokingly calls us "doomsday preppers"...bet I know who would survive better should things go belly up ;)

    You always give me something to think about Phil. Thank you for your wise words.

    xTania

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    1. Today's doomsday prepping was the last generation's normal life preparation. I bet your parents would have something wise to say about that.

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  7. I agree. We don’t use bottled water but as we use gallon plastic vinegar containers (clothes conditioner), I have started to save them to store drinking water just in case. Most of the other things are getting done. Look how people here got caught out regarding tinned and packaged food when WWII rationing was introduced.

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    1. We are able to buy water in sealed 20 litre stackable containers for a reasonable price. Very handy.

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  8. Eh, I thought this was normal to have available?! But then again, I live in a earthquake zone. I think brushing up on basic skills will be of great use. Take a look at the east coast in the USA. They are experiencing some gnarly weather - very low temperature and loads of snow. I am thinking we might see some different weather patterns that might be challenging if not prepared, not even taking into account any political situation.
    Thanks for your postings - always something to make me think or re-think.
    KJ

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    1. Too true - just a good blow or an oversized wave can set a city on its ear, it doe snot have to be a war. I'm thinking New Orleans.

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  9. No, you are not offensive at all. You are giving out sound, practical advice to those who will listen. I find that most of the naysayers are the kinds of peopl who rely on everyone else to sort them out or those who understand what you are saying, but are convinced that it won't happen in their lifetime.
    We had 2 world wars in 30 years - that was never going to happen again either. Both my Grandad's were in both wars & my Dad and Mum remember being told that it could never happen again after the first one- but it did & very few people were prepared.
    Look at "natural" disasters - people un-prepared, who then expect government agencies to sort them out and provide for them, but how can they, when there are millions of others needing help at the same time.
    We owe it to ourselves and those we love, to be prepared for as many eventualities as possible, in the best way we know how.

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    1. Not only natural disasters. My husband was diagnosed with Huntingtons Disease last May and since then i realised he will not be able to work too much longer and so we are preparing in different ways for when we no longer have that income.

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    2. PS- one of the foods i have stored is soup mix as if you can make bread and make soup you can feed yourself easily. I have a 20 Litre food bucket and in it i pop lentils, Italian Soup mix as it has the beans in it, split peas, chick peas and then shake it all together and use it as a base with what vegies i have growing. You could also add dried veg to the mix .

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  10. Fresh water has been on my list for ages. Thank you for the reminder, Phil. Although I invested in ETF's today I sometimes feel like burying some gold coins in our garden instead.

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    1. Bury some seeds - they will be worth as much as gold and far more practical :-)

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  11. I think it's only common sense to being prepared for whatever happens, be it local ie weather, job losses and such or global ie leaders who don't have any sense, common or otherwise.

    What's the worse that can happen if our fears are unfounded? We have stockpiles that we can use up and skills that are still skills to be used. Nothing wasted and so much more gain if our fears come to fruition.

    I'm just getting my husband around to us keeping a stockpile of tinned goods, it will be quite a while before he will even think of water. It's been hard going.

    Joan (Devon)

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    1. Little by little Joan. Appealing to your husband's basic male ego (I say that respectfully) will have him turned around in no time. I'm sure you can figure that out easily!

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  12. Hi Phill. I don't call this prepping, it's just plain old fashioned sensible household management!
    Honestly,how could maintaining an adequate larder or emergency funds cause offence?
    I maintain my household supplies in the same way as you, it's not scaremongering, it's just common sense.
    Best wishes Sally

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    1. Hi Sally - yep, yet so many folk just think things are going to continue on getting exponentially better. Being a realist is now no longer deemed as a social nicety.

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  13. I feel things are unsettled and uncertain. It isn't outside the realms of possibility that there may be some future world event (as you call it) that impacts all of us. I think the things you've listed are practical and sensible. Meg p.s. That salad in your header photo looks very delicious!

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    1. The HM daughters threw this salad together last night for dinner - it was marvelous. It is nice having adult children that cook for the family occasionally - a nice treat to come home from work with it all done.

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  14. I agree with everything you have written here and yes, i know about the rolling eyes thing, but those who roll their eyes will wish they has listened when things go down. As you say " history has a way of repeating itself"

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    1. Yep, they will be knocking on our door with their hand out when the time comes.

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    2. Phil, some won't be knocking, they'll be knocking down the door... Not all neighbors are going to be so nice and helpful.

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    3. Hmmm, you are probably right. Human nature at its best.

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  15. As everyone said, it’s just common sense. My husband has been laid off since just before Christmas with no money coming in. We have enough food to last months and savings to ride this out. That’s why we save and stockpile.
    Debbie

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    1. A perfect example Debbie - all the best with the job searching too.

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  16. Oh Phil, and who will everyone you know who isn't as wise run to when it all goes pear shaped? Wisdom isn't often recognised until after it's needed, I too am accused of scare-mongering and making people fearful. The world isn't going to get nicer - regardless of what we all want. World peace won't happen. There will always be poor and there will always be the greedy. And common sense, independence and freedom is going to slowly disappear as more and more people refuse to take responsibility for themselves and their actions -"the government should......". We have a 12 month supply of everything (except water and fuel, but we're working on the storage solutions for those) all the time. I like the security of knowing that if something happens, we can still eat, stay clean, maintain our home and garden and generally keep going for at least twelve months. We don't do it out of fear, but because for us it gives peace of mind in an uncertain world.

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    1. Cath - it's as if you have pulled a whole chapter out of my mind and pasted it here in the comments. But of course, you would be one of the first people to have this all sorted. Preach it!

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    2. Cath, I found your post so touching...I completely agree with you, and although my ability to stockpile and prepare is very limited, I'm glad that good and decent people are doing so. I still hold on to the idea independence and freedom won't disappear completely, and I believe that enough decent people will continue to inhabit the earth that we can all help each other. I know that sounds a bit OTT, but I still believe that "the arc of moral history is long but it bends toward justice."

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  17. This is very practical advice Phil. I live in a hurricane prone area and am slowly stockpiling canned food, water, batteries etc. All of these came handy when I didn't have electricity for three days this year.

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  18. It’s not stupid to prepare for the worst. You’ll just be the smart man waving at everyone who wants water, food, heat, light, medical supplies. Carry on, Mr H! ☺️
    And yes, that salad looks amaaaazing!

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  19. I am getting prepared for whatever happens, be it illness, power cuts, problems with the weather. We are expecting a few hot days, and we don't need to leave the house for anything other than a Dr's appt.
    Margaret

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    1. Preparation is far better than panicking - you are so right Margaret

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  20. Iv'e had the same view as you for a couple of years now. I let my stockpiling go a little this past year - but now it's time to get it going again.

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  21. My children are adults living on their own but all live close to home. I have been keeping a steady stock of canned foods, water, tp, feminine supplies. Also powdered milk, potatoes, stews and soups that I have cooked and frozen that we could defrost and eat at room temp in a worst case scenario. Also stocking up on many other things and just keep it rotating.

    I live on the outskirts of a major city so getting out in an emergency could be tough. But we have stocks of food and items to protect ourselves. My neighbors on either side of my home also think the same way so we have each other also. I think we have to plan ahead

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  22. I agree with you Phil and although B and I used to joke about us having enough food and resources to feed the entire street in the event of the next noah's ark type flood, it's actually a very sound idea to be prepared in case of any type of interruption or disaster. As an example, three of our neighbors couldn't keep warm, cook any food or make a cup of tea when the power went off for a few hours. We have all of the measures in place, plus enough petrol to run our generator (freezers and fridge) and could live well for quite some time.

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    1. Fuel storage is a tricky one. I have to research this more from a safety perspective.....but it has to happen yes. Our council has strict rules about fuel storage.

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  23. Here on our side of the island we have already been told that it would take a week or more before emergency people would really be able to help us if our roads and power lines are down around the coast. Priority will be given to the city of Honolulu first. A big hurricane or a tsunami WILL happen some time. We also have to now think about nuclear attack as well. Along with the monthly test of the tsunami warning sirens, we now have another wailing sound for nuclear attack. Even without disasters, the power or water can go off so it always good to have some back up on hand. We also appreciate those in the community who know how to cook in earth ovens the old Polynesian way. Some years ago the power was off for three days after a hurricane but all the community got their Thanksgiving turkeys cooked that way.

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  24. It's so interesting to see the buzz of comments on this topic!

    There's a lingering feeling that there's something just over the horizon... I guess with it being the new year, we've been thinking about what 2018 might hold.
    As you know, *our* belief is that scripture prophesies another huge world war, though we don't know exactly when that will be, though we can see things falling into place.

    It is the not knowing when, that ensures we 'keep calm and carry on' - investing even though the whole financial system might collapse at any moment. Money is just paper (or indeed, even digital numbers) that only have value as long as people believe it does.
    So we continue, keeping calm but alert, and doing what we can to be prepared (without being 'preppers'), and waiting patiently in the expectation that all our human plans may come to a halt.

    Thanks for the thought provoking post :)

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  25. I don't know about you peeps, but I'll be stockpiling soap, loo rolls and tea leaves! I've spent a lot of time reading about WWII and rationing, and I think the above 3 items will be necessary to keep my spirits up in the event of difficult times!

    Madeleine.x

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  26. I think its just good household management to have a well stocked pantry but it seems to be less common these days. My hubby thought I was weird keeping water stored until one Friday evening our water pipes burst and we had no water until Monday. I had plenty on in storage. I do agree with your thoughts we are headed for difficult times unfortunately.

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  27. I don’t think for one minute that the nay-sayers have not had similar thoughts Phil, however, they just don’t want to admit or think about it.

    Even though we are not stock piling as such, we had given thought to altering parts of our upcoming overseas travel plans to avoid areas of concern and have now made the decision to do just that.

    Time will tell whether I am being overly cautious but the two of us, our travel friends and our respective families are much more at ease now the decision has been made.

    Take care Phil and to quote my dear old Dad, who gives a rats what other people think!!!!

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  28. Perhaps the list should be part of everyday life and not just preparations for difficult times, after all we never know what life may hold for us and having alternative plans is never a bad thing - after all it's easier not to panic if you have a bit of a plan.

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  29. ps. We are probably the first generation who doesn't think of these things aren't everyday and prudent preparations for possible hard times or just for winter. Thanks for another great post.

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